The trustees of Little Gransden Village Hall have achieved the coveted Hallmark 1 accreditation, a nationally recognised quality standard scheme for village halls and community facilities.

A team of visitors who carried out the accreditation inspection were said to be "impressed" with the management committee's drive in taking the committee forward over the last few months, while continuing to make further improvements to the facility.

The rural charity, Cambridgeshire ACRE runs the scheme throughout the county.

Upgrades to the village hall have included replacement windows and an extension to the car park. The committee has received funding from National Lottery Awards for All and Little Gransden Parish Council to pay for the works required in the car park and a grant from South Cambridgeshire District Council of £3,000 to support the replacement of double-glazed windows.

Sue Chase, chairman of the hall's management committee, said: "It's been very encouraging to go through the Hallmark process - we work hard as trustees and it's enabled us to see where our strengths lie and also to learn how to make those little improvements that enhance the smooth running of the hall. My thanks to everyone involved in ensuring that our village hall continues to be a valuable community asset

The benefits of the Hallmark scheme for village halls include formal recognition that the community facility has embedded good practice and procedures, giving residents and hirers confidence that their valuable community venue is being well managed and run by the trustees. There are three levels to the Hallmark scheme and it is hoped the trustees of Little Gransden Village Hall will soon go on to achieve the next two levels.

Kirsten Bennett, chief executive of Cambridgeshire ACRE, said: "We would like to congratulate the trustees and volunteers at Little Gransden Village Hall on their recent success with Hallmark 1.

"This accreditation is confirmation of the hard work and dedication of the management committee and supporters of the village hall. I wish them every success as they progress through the next two levels of the scheme."