The VCG is a group of passionate, free thinkers who believe in community and shared space. We are locals who got together first when we heard our Vogelmorn Hall* was being sold and we started talking about keeping it in the ‘hood.
In 2014 some of us joined the Wellington City Council’s Kaka Project, a community-driven consultation project for creating a vision of the wider suburb. The Kaka Project found that this southern part of Brooklyn had been a bit low in new initiatives for years. The glaring omission is that there is nowhere for such a vibrant, community to congregate. The public consultation showed that many people from across Brooklyn felt that maintaining the Vogelmorn Hall and services in the area, especially with the growth in infill housing, was important.
During 2014 the Vogelmorn Bowling Club building was put up for sale. What a tremendous asset – we didn’t want to see this beautiful north-facing space get lost under a bulldozer’s blade and turned into housing development. It was at the end of that year that we decided the formation of a Charitable Trust was important to create a structure for formal ownership in the community.
Now thanks to the generosity of the Vogelmorn Foundation (the trust formed by ex-bowlers to decide what to do with the property) our Trust owns the Bowling Club building. The Bowling Club has been host to community dinners, international dance performances, Wellington Fringe Festival, theatre shows, conferences, music rehearsals, yoga sessions and film launches, and most importantly, fun events that are bringing our community together.
Currently the building is being administered by Barbarian Productions whose directors are locals Jo Randerson and Thomas Lahood.
We imagine the former bowling clubrooms to be a meeting house or common room for our people in Kingston, Vogeltown, Mornington and Wellington in general.
Thanks to community engagement the Wellington City Council has resolved not to sell the Vogelmorn Hall and Green. The WCC-backed Kaka Project has seen community consultation about the Vogelmorn Precinct feed into plans to enhance the Precinct. These will be implemented in stages over the coming years.