Kinsbourne Common Hall, Harpenden
Evenings (6pm until midnight)
£90 for up to three hours
(£30 for each subsequent hour)
£50 for three hours
(£15 for each subsequent hour before 6pm)
HIRES OTHER THAN PARTIES
First hour: £20
Second hour: £15
Subsequent hours: £10
Pro-rata for part hours. These rates cover the main hall (approx 140 sq m), kitchen and toilets.
The rate for the Kinsbourne Meeting Room (48 sq m) upstairs is 35% of the main hall rate if the hirer is also hiring the main hall. This room can also be hired on its own, at 50% of the main hall rate, unless there is an incompatible activity already booked in the main hall (eg, for child protection reasons the KMR may not be hired during beavers/cubs/scouts, nursery, toddler group). If the KMR hirer wants assurance that there will be no noise from the main hall, we will agree not to book the main hall, but the KMR hire fee will be 100% of the main hall rate.
Discounted rates may be available for charities.
Please do not make any arrangements that rely on your booking until we confirm it and issue your invoice.
We cannot provide a key to hirers (unless the hire is a weekly one). Note that we cannot always find a volunteer who is available to lock up for bookings between 3pm and 6pm on weekday afternoons.
What we provide: use of the rooms and equipment. No services, other than unlocking and relocking the hall.
Sorry, we do not accept parties where the majority of attendees will be aged between 16 and 22.
Due to unsociable hours for volunteers locking up, we generally do not accept party bookings that end later than 9pm, though we sometimes make exceptions. In such cases it is compulsory to book a clean the following morning.
Hires which vacate the building after midnight are discouraged, but might be negotiable. Premium rates will apply.
PAYMENT FOR YOUR BOOKING
To confirm a booking, hirers must normally pay the hire fee and deposit in full within a week. For last minute bookings (within 2 weeks of the hire) payment deadline is 3 days. For bookings made more than 60 days in advance, payment need not be made until 60 days before the hire.
You will be invoiced via Paypal and we encourage you to pay this way. You don’t need to have a Paypal account; just a credit or debit card. It costs you nothing. If necessary, however, we accept cheques.
If payment is not made on time, the hirer will be considered to have cancelled the hire.
If you cancel late, we have little chance of getting a replacement booking. For cancellations more than 30 days before the date of the hire we will refund 90% of the hire charge; between 30 days and 48 hours beforehand, we will refund 70%; for notice of less than 48 hours, we will refund 50%. There are no refunds once the hire has commenced or for failure to turn up.
You will also be invoiced (via Paypal, at the time of booking) for the damages deposit. This is payable at the same time as the hire fee.
The deposit is refundable (usually within a week), minus the cost of any damage or cleaning or restitution for breaking booking conditions (such as disturbing neighbours or vacating late and delaying the next user).
The damages deposit for parties/dances/social events is £300 for hires that end after 6pm and £200 before that time. This is NOT, however, a cap on the liability for damage. If the liability exceeds the deposit amount, we will require the hirer to pay the extra.
The hall is our home, so we expect you to look after it. It is run by volunteers; there is no caretaker to clean after each hire.
For daytime parties and other hires, we rely on you to leave the hall (including toilets and kitchen) clean at the end of your hire, including mopping the floor and taking your rubbish home. When booking your hire times, unless you opt to book a cleaner (see below), please allow enough time for you to clean afterwards. If it is wet or muddy outside, please don’t underestimate how dirty the hall can get. If mud is allowed to get out of control it can take several people more than an hour to clean the floors properly. It is therefore in your interests to do what you reasonably can to stop the hall from getting dirty, such as requiring children to take their shoes off at the door if it is muddy or wet outside.
For evening parties, experience has shown that most hirers underestimate how much cleaning will be needed and regret having to do the clean themselves. This causes delays late at night. It is therefore now compulsory that we book a cleaner for the following morning, which makes life easier for you and us. The cost will be taken from your deposit and will depend on how long the clean takes, but will usually be £54. However, this saves you hiring the hall for an extra hour to do the clean, so the net additional cost is negligible.
Even if a cleaner has been booked you will, however, still be expected to put away tables and chairs (cleaning them first) and clear up cans, bottles, food, etc, taking bin bags home with you. The cleaning fee will be higher if the hall is left unusually messy.
If daytime party hirers prefer not to clean, they can request us to book the cleaner (if there is enough time at the end of their hire before the next event starts). Ideally, do this well in advance, as the cleaner might not be available at short notice. If the hall is left dirty, we will book an emergency clean and take the cost out of the deposit. This will cost more, as the cleaning company will need to pay extra to staff to persuade them to come out at no notice. If there’s no time for an emergency clean before the next hirer, we reserve the right to use your deposit to compensate the next hirer.
The full hire agreement for one-off bookings can be downloaded by clicking the following file name: hireagreement.pdf
We often have enquiries about the people-capacity of our hall. Each hirer must judge this themselves (viewings are welcome), but we would recommend no more than 100 people at a function seated at tables. Somewhat more if there are no seats or tables, but maximum 150.
If you would like to know what chairs, tables, kitchen equipment we have, please click the file: Inventory.pdf.
BALLS ARE PROHIBITED
Heavy balls such as footballs, rugby balls, and basketballs are not permitted to be used in the hall under any circumstances. They could smash the lights or knock down the ceiling acoustic panels, which could cause injury (not to mention damage to the hall). We will supply suitable soft balls on request.
Note that the car park is also used by the church and users of the church hall. There is usually space available (except Sunday mornings), but we cannot guarantee this.
We discourage hires on Sunday mornings, as the church will be using the parking, though we will accept hires if the hirer agrees to ask their guests not to use the car park or driveway, even for drop-off or pick-up.
If, at other times, the church has a funeral or a wedding, we think it is appropriate to give them priority for parking for such special events, so we may have to ask our hirers to park on suitable nearby roads, a few minutes’ walk away.
COMMERCIAL PARTY ORGANISERS & OTHER BUSINESSES
Our purpose is to provide a facility to the community, not to provide business premises for businesses.
Hirers are welcome to use commercial party businesses to organise their party or similar function on their behalf. If the hirer requests, we are happy to liaise with such businesses to make appropriate arrangements, but we do not hire direct to such businesses. We would be delighted if such businesses wish to recommend to their customers that the customer may wish to hire our hall as a venue for a party which is otherwise provided by that business to the customer.
Similarly, we generally will not accept bookings from other businesses unless they are micro-businesses of a community nature, such as a yoga class.
We permit hirers to serve alcohol, but they should check if they need a licence from the council. See comments at the end of the hire agreement.
WEDDING RECEPTIONS and PARTIES
In deciding whether our hall is suitable for their wedding reception or other ‘posh‘ event, prospective hirers should bear in mind a number of factors such as:
• the decor (the hall is a scout hut - see photos of the main hall)
• the kitchen is not large
• the car park has capacity for 20 cars, at best, if no-one else is parked there
• there is an absolute prohibition on disturbing the neighbouring houses, by noise or otherwise
• our tables, chairs, cutlery and crockery are not fancy and there may not be enough - you would probably have to hire these things
• there is no reception desk or staff, so it may not be easy for suppliers to drop off party supplies (chairs, decorations, glasses, etc) in advance or pick them up after the end of your event, and our ability to store these things is limited
(for conditions of hire, page down)