THE team behind the Ashcombe Village Hall has managed to go above and beyond their target by raising over £10,000 for a local farming charity. The group has spent much of the last decade working towards the target, which was kindly donated to the Addington Fund.

Built in 1938 by Brigadier and Lady Rayner, the village hall is still run as a club by local volunteers as a not-for-profit rural community centre.

The charity funds were generated through regular activities, as well as hiring out the hall as a private party/wedding venue and more. It has its own fully licensed bar which is run by the locals and is naturally kept busy during skittles every Tuesday night, as well as during other regular activity nights to keep the local community connected and entertained.

Additional fundraising activity has included hosting breakfasts, guided estate tours followed by cream teas, as well as putting on evening drinks, BBQ nights, and the Ashcombe Village Fete and Country Show.

The Ashcombe Village Club has around 150 members, with a village population of around 60 people, the charitable contributions are ‘quite astonishing for such a relatively small village initiative.’

Ralph Rayner, the Estate Owner said ‘I am proud to have chaired the Ashcombe Village Club’s Committee since 2012, and to see all that it does to bring people together. Once upon a time, the village was quietly in decline, so to see our successful local economy and social club’s activities and fundraising events really does lift the spirit and keep us all incentivised to do more.

‘We have supported the Addington Fund for many years now, as their charity remit stands close to our hearts living in such a rural area. As we know, farmers are the backbone of this country and without food security, the nation could starve.

‘Supporting agricultural charities like the Addington Fund is vital to continue helping farmers when times get tough. Addington helps new entrants into farming and supports farmers who want to retire from agriculture but can’t afford to do so by themselves.

‘Their affordable housing scheme helps farming families within the rural community by renting property at an affordable rate. As we all know, housing has now become

‘ very expensive and for those who don’t own their own property, renting rural is almost impossible.

‘Over the years we have organised many fundraising activities for this fantastic charity and I am pleased to say these events have raised over £10,000. It’s a phenomenal amount of money which we know has gone directly to farmers who ask for help from the Addington Fund.’

The event to tip the scale was the annual fundraising breakfast, which was held at the Ashcombe Village Club last month. The event raised over £1,800 and was kindly sponsored by UK Agricultural Finance Ltd.

A spokesperson for the Addington Fund said: ‘Fundraising and support such as this is vital to continue helping those in need, so the Addington Fund would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone living in the village and to those who attend the Ashcombe events for their continuous and generous support.’