Plans for a new village hall were originally discussed in 2003 with a scheme – overseen by the newly formed Middleton Village Hall Trust ¬– to locate the hall at the entrance to Glover Court in Middleton. The hall was to be partially funded by Section 106 monies from Glover Court’s developers Faircloughs, with contributions from Corby Borough Council, Northamptonshire County Council, Middleton Parish Council and Corus Steel.

Following consultation with villagers and feedback from the Cottingham Parish Plan and Middleton Parish Plan, it was decided that the hall should really be a joint venture for the whole community. This and subsequent feedback also identified that villagers would prefer to have the new hall located on or near Cottingham’s recreation field.

When Cottingham and Middleton Village Hall Trust (Northants) was formed in 2007, we decided the ideal location for the new hall was on the Village Acre, which is next to the recreation field on the corner of Cottingham’s Mill Road.

The Village Acre is currently held in trust on behalf of Cottingham villagers by the Village Hall Management Committee, which runs the existing Village Hall. The site has a specific covenant dating from 1971, stating that it ‘shall not be used for any purpose other than the erection of a Village Hall’, making it the logical location.

Final plans were drawn up after considerable consultation with North Northamptonshire Joint Planning Unit and Corby Borough Council (CBC), and a planning application was submitted in November 2017. The application was approved unanimously by CBC’s Development Control Committee on 8 August 2018.

The name The Mill is inspired by the old water mill on Mill Road, which was a favourite of the late Keith Allsop who kick started the new hall project over 15 years ago. As the entrance to the new hall will be on Mill Road, the name also ties in nicely with its location.

The project is now in its fundraising phase and we are looking to start initial works on the site’s entrance by August 2020.