Photographs of proposed venues for Social Dance and Workshops - Sidmouth Folk Week 2005.
Added to website 14 March 2005 in response to discussion on mudcat. Updated 1 June 2005.
Read this page in conjunction with the main page and email discussions page and the detailed dance programme.
Originally, when the dance tickets went on sale in 2004, the principal venue was proposed as the hall of Sidmouth College. This hall (actually the main canteen) is huge, and 150+ people could easily have been accommodated. It was ruled out because of lack of a suitable number of fire exits. Apparently, a filing cabinet would have had to be moved to create one additional exit. The college head said 'no', so the hall cannot be used for public performances, etc. But it is still apparently rated as being quite safe for children, and when all the cooking equipment is in use. Of course, this poses a far lower risk of fire than a few overheated non-smoking folkies.....
The huge sports hall of the college, on the same site, was proposed for some ceilidhs but according to my reliable source, it was refused on the grounds that an aerobics class would have to be rescheduled. Devon County Council (who control the buildings) seem eager to accommodate the struggling Sidmouth Folk Week!
The photos shown below give some idea of the venues as are currently proposed:
Sidford Village Hall is quite acceptable, and 60 or 70 people can dance without getting crushed. Local on-street parking is possible. Some of the natives are friendly.
St Frances Hall in Woolbrook is probably about the same size and in a pleasant setting with some car parking. I recall the main hall does not include the area to the left of the blue doors. It is about 0.5 mile from the Youth Centre at Manstone.
The Youth Centre at Manstone, which is apparently to replace Sidmouth College Hall is on the outskirts of the largest estate of public sector housing in Sidmouth.
Sidford Village Hall, a little over two miles from the seafront and easy to walk or cycle (illegally) down a pleasant footpath right into town. An easy and safe journey for children on foot. Quite a nice village hall. I would be banned for life if I said otherwise..... Adjacent to a play area for children and local tennis courts (for when the dancing becomes all too much?)
St Frances Church Hall in Woolbrook, in a pleasant residential area with good on-street and allocated car parking. The Church is shown below. The hall is about 1.3 miles from the seafront, along busy roads.
The Youth Centre at Manstone. A rather dreary building at the best of times it is approximately a mile from the seafront and a mile from Sidford Village Hall. Parking difficult on road but free for up to 2 hours at the nearby LIDL supermarket - a condition of the planning permission for this was that the car park had to be 'public' well as for patrons of LIDL - but only for 2 hours.
If all else fails, the football club hall adjacent to the Youth centre!? A popular venue for the town's sporting youth but not quite folkie material.
All of the proposed venues suffer one major drawback - they are not in central Sidmouth. However, they are all on the proposed festival circular bus route.
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