Matterdale Community Association
Matterdale Community Association (MCA), was established in 2013, and registered with the Charity Commission on 15 January 2013 as a Charity Incorporated Organisation. (Charity No 1151528).
It was set up by Keith Clark, who was born and bred in Matterdale, to benefit the community by bringing people together and providing interesting, enjoyable, and stimulating activities. There had previously been a Village Hall in Matterdale, located in the Old School owned by the County Council, which was a thriving concern with a wide range of activities from whist drives, to amateur dramatics, and a focal point for the valley. However the fabric of the building deteriorated, it became uncomfortable to use and attendance declined. Eventually it was sold by the County Council, and hence our Village Hall was ‘lost’. Keith was determined, and worked tirelessly with others, to make sure that a community facility continued to exist In Matterdale and establishing MCA was a crucial part of this.
The formal aims of MCA ‘objects’ in Charity Commission terms, are:
To promote for the benefit of the inhabitants of Matterdale and adjacent parishes without distinction of sex, sexual orientation, race or of political, religious, or other opinions, by associating together the said inhabitants and the local authorities, voluntary and other organisations in a common effort to advance education and to provide facilities in the interests of social welfare for recreational and other leisure time occupations with the objects of improving the conditions of life of the said inhabitants.
To establish or secure the establishment of a community centre (herein called the centre)and to maintain and manage the same (whether alone or in co-operation with any local person or authority or person or body) in furtherance of these objects;
To advance education for the benefit of the public through the provision of educational grants to young people under the age of 25 who are resident in Matterdale with any finds that are not required for the maintenance or development of the property.
The constitution allows for 12 trustees, and membership is open to anyone living in the valley of Matterdale, plus a further 20% from outside the valley, who supports the aims of the Charity. Currently there are 11 trustees and over 100 members.
Sadly Keith died before he was able to get MCA fully up and running, and there was then a bit of a time lag until new Trustees were appointed in 2015. Since then the Association has, through its Virtual Village Hall Committee, put on lots of events. In the summer of 2016 we had a marquee in the grounds of the Royal Hotel in Dockray, and hosted ceilidhs, pop up restaurants, musical evenings, a local choir, bake offs , children’s games, salsa evenings etc. Following on from this, and without a venue of our own, we have organised over the last few years activities in the Royal (pub quizzes, bake offs,) the Church and it’s meeting room (shared lunches, Easter egg competitions and hunts, community meetings), and worked with other charities e.g. Cruse, to host musical evenings in a local barn. The ‘what’s on ‘ section of the website gives a flavour of the kinds of things we have done. Matterdale has a lot going on. Many people in the valley help in organising events, setting up the website, offering of their time an expertise, and without this we couldn’t do what we do. We also communicate with other Community centres, eg Watermillock and Threlkeld, and advertise their events.
MCA would very much like to have its own building in the valley so that it can develop the recreational and educational activities it provides to reach a wider section of our and other local communities. We think that doing so will contribute towards the ongoing life of the community, its sustainability, and help to make it a vibrant place to live, work and visit. The plan, if it comes to fruition, is for MCA to lease a new purpose built facility from the Matterdale Parish Council and the Matterdale School Foundation. At present this is a hope, and we are keeping our fingers crossed while these two bodies try to secure sufficient funds and planning permission.
The current trustees are:
Veronica Gore. Chair
Jane Newport. Secretary
Mark Nixon. Treasurer