Ridgelands Community Fund helps out Sandy Hollow Progress Association

SANDY Hollow and the Wybong area are set to benefit from funds from the Ridgelands Community Fund with the Sandy Hollow Hall a big winner.

UPGRADE: Sandy Hollow Hall is set for an upgrade in the latest round of funding from Ridgelands Community Fund.

UPGRADE: Sandy Hollow Hall is set for an upgrade in the latest round of funding from Ridgelands Community Fund.

Sandy Hollow Progress Association (SHPA) president Sharon Wallace said the group had received $158,000 in total, $138,000 for the hall, and $10,000 each for the Honey Lane plan and the cattle raising plan.

Under the proposal, the 80-year-old hall’s rusting roof will be completely replaced, 10 windows will be replaced and solar panels with batteries will be installed to try to take it off the grid.

The premises will also receive slimline water tanks, exterior paint, upgraded bathrooms and quality furniture pieces including tables and chairs.

The aim is to make the hall more commercially attractive for higher-end functions including boutique country weddings and engagement parties however its primary use as a community function centre will always be the main priority.

“We struggle every year with our fundraising,” Mrs Wallace said.

“Rather than selling raffle tickets, a few years ago we bought some poddy calves and three or four people take them and grow them out.

“It’s only due to those people’s generosity that it happens.”

The $10,000 will be used to fund the purchase of more young steers after the season turns around, as well as pay bills related to the maintenance of community assets, services and for community events.

The SHPA also owns about two hectares on Honey Lane which Mrs Wallace said was once used as a sports area.

“It’s fallen into disrepair, people travel a lot more easily now and it hasn’t been used for a while,” she said.

The group applied for $295,000 to build a kiosk space, toilet and shower facilities, play area, as well as provide facilities for caravans, with the idea that they could then host outdoor events.

SHPA was given $10,000 to put together a concept plan.

Other groups to receive funding include Wybong Hall Committee Community Workshops, $33,450; Upper Hunter Riding for the Disabled arena completion, $50,000; Wybong Rural Fire Service mobile telephone tower feasibility, $25,000; and the Hunter Region Landcare Network’s Sandy Hollow outdoor classroom, $7518.