The history of the hall
Built in 1999 the hall provides a great venue for a wide range of events. But it wasn't always in this condition. A campaign to renovate the village hall started many years earlier led by the then Chairman, Derek Jacobs.
The pond forms the focal centre of the hamlet and gained international recognition in the film Chitty Chitty Bang Bang when the car drove into the pond.
The earliest known record of the pond is in the notes on Russells Water which record "the pond came through digging for clay, there was quite a large brick kiln as well. It ran out of clay in the early part of the century.
Interestingly it goes on to state "in 1921, it was a very dry summer so they thought they would clean out the pond, hundreds of cartloads of mud were taken out on the back green and spread it all over the place".
By the end of the 20th. Century it was becoming clear that the pond was heavily silted up and again need cleaning.
To avoid introducing conflicting local fund raising priorities, fund raising to clean the pond was delayed until the rebuilding of The Village Hall was complete.
Once again, a dry summer brought matters to a head. At the end of 2002, the Russells Water Nature Conservation Group was formed with the initial focus on raising funds to clear out the pond.
The charter for the group was signed on 7 October 2003. Particular individuals and the community in general were once again very generous in their direct contributions and via fund raising activities such as the local Russells Water tennis tournament. In addition to the local fund raising activities, The Trust for Oxfordshire's Environment Ltd. (TOE) and Grundon Waste Management in terms of the landfill tax credit scheme, contributed generously and the project was undertaken in August 2003. Upper Nuttalls Farm very kindly agreed to allow the silt to be spread on its fields.
We are very privileged to live in an area of outstanding natural beauty (ANOB) which is well endowed with wild life.