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Supporting Scotland's vibrant voluntary sector

Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations is the membership organisation for Scotland's charities, voluntary organisations and social enterprises. Charity registered in Scotland SC003558. Registered office Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh EH3 6BB.

Heart of the community: village halls conference

09:30-16:10, 1 May 2024
This event took place about 2 months ago
Birnam Arts
Station Road
Rachel Boyd
0141 465 7539
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Village halls are often the heart of a community; places for people to gather, learn, access services and have fun. This one-day conference at Birnam Arts will allow people running village and community halls across Scotland to do the same – to connect, share ideas, and inspire each other.

Overall aim

At this conference, you’ll get to:

  • Connect with fellow hall workers and volunteers; learn about how to connect with service providers and funding opportunities; discuss new ways to connect with your communities.
  • Share stories, tips, and experiences; share positive experiences and celebrate the impact you’re making on your communities; share difficulties you’ve faced or are facing, problems you’ve encountered and ways to address these.
  • Inspire others with creative solutions to common village hall issues; get inspired to apply for funding or investigate new income streams; feel inspired by the wonderful community-building going on in rural and urban communities across Scotland.


• Going green amidst an energy crisis – with architecture firm New Practice, Local Energy Scotland and Utility Aid

• Facilities management – with Utility Aid, Keegan & Pennykid, SCVO, DTAS and more


• Succession: who will keep the village hall going? With Dr Rona Campbell, senior manager at Highlands and Islands Enterprise

• Governance and compliance: everything you need to know – with Keegan & Pennykid and Àrachas3

• Village hall futures: getting young people involved in village and community spaces – with InspirAlba and the Scottish Rural & Islands Youth Parliament

• Booking systems: what makes a good one and why you need it - with Hallmaster and SCVO

• Enterprise and culture: keys to financial stability – with Community Enterprise

SCVO (the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations), with help from the Community Ownership Support Service (COSS) and the Scottish Rural Network recently launched the Village and Community Halls Handbook, a free online resource designed to help with the running and maintenance of our #EssentialVillageHalls across the country. The conference will share some of the essential information in the handbook while also providing networking and learning opportunities. 

The conference will take place from 9.30am – 4.10pm at Birnam Arts, with two 25-minute breaks and a 1-hour lunch break. Lunch and refreshments will be provided. 

The conference will take place in person, with an option to join online. We hope to be able to offer bursaries for some attendees joining in person. If the possibility of a bursary towards your travel/accommodation would help you attend in person, please tick the corresponding box on the booking form.

This event is made possible with the support of our funding partners Scottish Rural Network, Keegan & Pennykid, Utility Aid, and Hallmaster; and our supporting partners Scottish Rural Network, Scottish Rural Action, Development Trusts Association Scotland (DTAS), Community Enterprise, and Social Enterprise Scotland.

Who was the event aimed at?

People who run or work/volunteer at village and community halls across Scotland.

Other Information

This is a free event. Due to the limited spaces, we ask that no more than 2 people attend from one village or community hall. If you have any questions, accessibility requirements, or need assistance booking a place, please contact us at

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