THE future of two historic local institutions has been secured thanks to a marriage of convenience which changed their fates at the eleventh hour.
It looked like the final days were drawing to a close for both the Laverton Institute Snooker Club and the Dilton Marsh Social Club.
In May, the snooker club was evicted from its home of over 100 years, The Laverton Hall, to make way for more office space for Westbury Town Council and was at a loss for a new home.
Dilton Marsh Social Club celebrated its 60th anniversary last year but was heading towards what appeared to be the inevitable end due to a slide in membership. The £3,000 which had been supporting the club, willed by an old regular, was running out. Recent efforts to turn the club’s fortunes around had been showing results but a final cash boost was needed to seal the deal.
Soon, however, the newly named Dilton (ex-Laverton) Snooker Club will hold its first meeting at the Dilton Marsh Social Club, marking the start of a new chapter for both organisations.
“All we hear about is pubs and clubs closing but we’ve found a way round to help us both out,” said social club committee member Vince Macey. “We’ve been doing a few things recently to increase our membership, but this is really the icing on the cake.”
Des Huntley, secretary and treasurer of the Laverton Institute Snooker Club, said; “I’m just waiting to get sets of keys made up and then we’ll get everybody together for a little party.”
Des said that it was “horrible” to have to leave Westbury but the 26-strong club is very pleased with its new home.
“It looks very much like the Laverton used to. It looks very good,” he said, adding that the club’s future was likely to be secured for at least the next ten years. This was in part due to the £6,800 in compensation which the club was paid by Westbury Town Council as trustees of the Laverton Hall when their lease was not renewed.
The space left by the snooker club will be converted into offices and conference space for Westbury Town Council.
Cllr Stephen Andrews, chair of the Laverton working group said, “The offices the staff are in at the moment are not appropriate. They are too crowded and the clerk doesn’t have a proper office, he just has a partitioned off bit in the main office. There’s no privacy for anybody and if we have a meeting it means the clerk can’t get on with any work.”
Cllr Andrews said he hoped to use local firms for the work which is expected to start later in the year after plans are reviewed in September.
A WESTBURY business owner is celebrating after she was named as one of the UK’s most impressive female entrepreneurs. Pippa...