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RDP project database

Tackling Community Isolation in Midgley Village


Provision of a new community room in Midgley village in the Pennines using an old cooperative building to ensure continuation of a range of events, services and support activities for the village residents, thus contributing to community cohesion.


Due to its remote and steep location Midgley village has experienced a steady decline in the provision of rural services, gradually losing its pub, chapel, local shop and post office. Infrequent transport services also created accessibility problems to and from the village for some residents. To tackle these issues, villagers set up the Midgley Community Forum, run by volunteers. In 2007 the Community Forum was left without premises.


The overall goal was to enable the Community Forum to continue providing support services, social functions and a shop for the benefit of the village. To achieve this, the intention was to provide a permanent new home for the Community Forum making use of an old cooperative store, and thus cater for the needs of villagers and contribute to local cohesion in the community.

Main activities

The main work involved purchase of the old cooperative building and refurbishment of the ground floor so that the community room and village shop could relocate and operate within it. The tasks included demolition and preparatory work, installing electrical, drainage and sewerage systems, carpentry, plumbing, roof and floor improvements, external works as well as installation of equipment for heating, cleaning and catering.

Results & Benefits

The Community Forum is able to continue providing important services to the village including support for disadvantaged groups and otherwise isolated individuals in the village. The room co-exists with a community-run village shop which is highly successful, profitable and stocks local products. The project has galvanized community support and interest within the village. Forty volunteers run the shop and community room and contribute to building a strong community in an isolated area.

Lessons learnt

The contribution of volunteers has been fundamental in implementing the project and has been key to ensuring ownership of the development by the local community. Keeping the community informed on progress is fundamental and requires a lot of effort. Keeping the volunteers motivated at all times is necessary in periods of uncertainty. Obtaining funds and managing such a large project requires great reserves and perseverance.

Project location and other information

Midgley village, Southern Pennines, Calder Valley.


Yorkshire and The Humber

RDP Territory


Total project cost (€)

273 600

EAFRD contribution (€)

61 560

Contact name

Ruth Hair


00 44 1422 846049

Languages for contact


Document attachment

At a glance


United Kingdom

Final beneficiary type


Budget range

€100 000 - €500 000

Start date:


End Date:


Theme / Measure:

• Rural Quality of Life & Economic Diversification
• Improving quality of life in rural areas
• 322. Village renewal and development


Rural society, Citizen participation, Social services, Disadvantaged people, Village facilities

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