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The Old Dalby village hall was Initially built by the Estate to provide a VILLAGE SCHOOL. In 1984 it was purchased by the Village with help from the County Council and local Parish Council. Many older villagers were taught at and have fond memories of the school so much so that a photographic exhibition featuring the school/ hall and its history was organised in mid 2017 by one of the residents to help raise money for the Village Hall Refurbishment funds. In September 2018 children of the local primary school  “attended lessons” at the hall complete with old desks, chairs, chalk boards, pinafores and flat hats! Mr Stern and Miss Nice instructed them in a variety of subjects. Some more photos and a write up in the Melton Times can be found here. The Village Hall is at the centre of the Conservation area forming a natural triangle with the church and village green.

School circa 1894

On a chilly, damp September day in 2019 Old Dalby a team of archaeologists and psychologists led volunteers including Scouts, schools and families from the village to dig 1mt square holes around Old Dalby and Queensway. The Crown pub provided a free lunch for the volunteers on Saturday. There were 9 digs in total but the one on the Playclose had to be closed after discovery of a cable which was not marked on the services maps. The one on the green was also closed as it was not producing a great deal (apart from a horseshoe!) and was waterlogged.  The finds included a piece of 8th-century pottery near the Knights Hospitalers Preceptory. The psychology students and volunteers carried out interviews to collect the data they needed. Approximately 100 people were involved over the weekend with many others stopping to see what was going on. The church very kindly invited volunteers to join them at their harvest festival and people had an impromptu guided tour of the church monuments with David Revill. The event was physically very demanding needing even more of the younger volunteers. It proved so popular another Big Dig was arranged.

History is important to the village and a well-subscribed Heritage Group meets around the last Thursday of the month at The Crown. They organise regular talks and exhibitions. Recently experts have entertained residents on subjects ranging from Romans in Leicestershire, Standing Stones and the influence of the Knights’ Hospitalers at Old Dalby. To join, or attend a group meeting send a message to Shanti via the booking page.

The community of Old Dalby and Queensway is keen to record its history and heritage so the Heritage Group  has, with the help of the Heritage Fund and Lincoln University, embarked on a project to compile, record and digitise a wealth of photographs and documents.  These are being submitted by residents, scanned and gradually added to a digital archive that is being made available to the public. If you would like to add something of interest and relevance please get in touch. You can access the archive here. Browse or look for a specific theme or item in the search bar.