The good people of Federal and surrounds fought hard to save and buy the church and the hall as part of their community facility.
Each year to pay for maintenance and ongoing costs the crew put on one hell of a shindig: FedRocks – a night of music and mayhem, where they show that no-one does a night in the country better than Federal.
Why is Federal Hall and the church so important to Federal as a community facility? What happens there?
Located in the centre of the village both the hall and the old church are in almost daily use throughout the year by the community. The facilities are available to all members of the community, to not-for-profit events and for commercial hire. The use by commercial users is carefully managed by the venue committee to ensure sufficient community use is available. Activities range from cooking classes, exercise classes, meditation classes, weddings, ping pong evenings, celebrations, film and food functions, musical events, dance events and instruction, pop up restaurants, to private weddings, birthday parties or gatherings of community groups around subjects or activities of community interest.
How do you maintain the facility?
The facility is managed by an elected and volunteer management committee who look after venue bookings, maintenance and repair and all the many activities that are needed to ensure the buildings and grounds are kept in first class condition for current and future community use. A key role of the committee is to ensure income is sufficient to cover the cost of operating the buildings and grounds.
Why do you need to keep raising money for community infrastructure?
It costs very close to $20,000 to operate this facility every year, that includes insurance, annual maintenance and repair as well as weekly maintenance. In addition major projects keep popping up, such as the recent total refurbishment of the church building, the landscaping or the recent painting of the hall. Shortly we will face the cost of a major sewage upgrade. Our income comes from venue hiring, donations, grants and from specific fundraising activities.
Do you get any council support?
We receive no funds from the council as we operate as an independent incorporated association. However council and successive mayors are and have always been supportive of our activities and fundraising efforts.
What do you think halls offer a community that is different to pubs or clubs or other venues?
The key point here is that this is a community facility, built by the community, maintained by the community, used by the community… loved by the community. It operates not-for-profit but for the community… by the community. It is indeed the Heart of Federal.
What is going to be special about this year’s fundraiser?
Federal loves music and any opportunity to come together, but also there seems to have been a recent wave of new folk into the Federal area, many of whom are getting involved in community. That is bringing lots more fresh energy and people connections which are very special and what makes this a special place to live. This will be the first BIG dance night in the hall that will bring us all together for a boogie… now that is special.
Featuring Dan Hannaford & his band at Jaspers Corner – Federal Hall on Saturday November 7.