After 13 long years the first turf was dug out of South Creake playing fields on Friday to mark the last stage in the campaign to build a pavilion.
Four of the trustees of the South Creake Memorial Pavilion, Rodney Wakeman and Len Ringwood, wielded the spades helped by Paul Hart and Robin Maslin.
Back in 2001, it was decided that the village’s War Memorial Institute was no longer fit for purpose and it was decided to sell the building and raise £711,000 to build a pavilion on the playing fields with changing facilities with showers for the village’s football, outdoor bowls and tennis clubs, toilets, a kitchen, meeting room and a main hall.
The hall will provide first class facilities for weddings and other functions as well as becoming an indoor centre for sports such as table tennis and carpet bowls.
The campaign to raise the money included applications for lottery funding and other grants, local fundraising such as a buy-a-brick scheme, wayside stalls and a variety of other events.
“Residents and second-home owners have all supported us,”said Mr Wakeman.
Part of South Creake is on a flood plain and the building will have an elevated floor with barriers on all the doors to prevent flooding. The site will have two car parks.
A bridge, separately funded by the parish council, has already been built over the River Burn to connect the building to the main road which runs through the village.
Already the topsoil is being removed so that the foundations for the building and the two car parks can be laid.
The pavilion is due be completed by November and officially open for Christmas.
Before then the trustees are appealing for residents to come forward to provide the volunteer force needed to run the pavilion.
“It’s been a hard slog,” said trustee, Robin Maslin.