Connect@Botley is based in the All Saints’ Church Extension, which was built in 2007 from funds raised by the Church Council and the Friends of All Saints. Eastleigh Borough Council also donated £3,000 to help with setting up the facility, which is run by a dedicated team of volunteers in partnership with Hampshire County Council’s Department of Culture, Communities and Rural Affairs (CCRA) and All Saints’ Parochial Church Council (PCC).
CCRA and All Saints’ PCC have worked together to create a superb community facility, in response to local community needs to have access to a cultural centre closer to home. There is a library, a museum and archive display space and also a free internet access facility.
The library is situated in the café style foyer, with tables and chairs available allowing users to browse in comfort. The book stock is maintained by Hampshire Library Information Service and is loaned out on an honesty system. There are novels and information books on a range of topics, including local history and gardening. Children’s books are also available, as well as material printed in foreign languages such as Polish, Bengali and Chinese. Jigsaw puzzles are also available to loan.
The museum and archive space is situated at the back of the church and is maintained by Hampshire County Council Museums Service. See Museums and Archives Display to read more information about the interesting artefacts and supporting material on display.
The free internet facility consists of five computer workstations – one of which is situated in the café foyer. The remaining four computers are situated upstairs in the Maffey Room. See Opening Hours for availability of the computers and Computer Open Sessions and Courses for details of computer open sessions and bookable courses.
There are toilet facilities and a lift to the Maffey Room, ensuring that the centre is fully accessible to all members of the community.
The library, museum space and café area computer are all available during regular Church opening hours - generally from 9am until 5pm or dusk.
Facilities may be closed during some Church services and this is advertised as far as possible in advance.
Computer Open Sessions and Courses
The Maffey Room computers are accessible when a volunteer computer tutor is present.
Visitors can attend open sessions where they can work on the computers independently, with friendly help and advice on hand if needed. There is no need to book attendance at open sessions – just turn up it’s free!
There are also some structured courses, places on which need to be booked in advance. A small charge to cover materials and venue costs is made for bookable courses.
Courses include Basic Computing (for complete beginners), Confidence with Computers (progression on from the Basics course), Using the Internet, Digital Photography and Researching your Family History.
Current courses and open session times are as follows:
- Tuesday 9.30am- 11.30am open session
- Tuesday 6:30pm – 8:30pm Confidence with Computers course (advance booking required)
- Thursday 9:30am – 11:30am Using the Internet Course (advance booking required)
- Friday 9:30am – 11:30am Digital Photography course (advance booking required)
- Saturday 9:30am – 11:30am open session
For further information on courses and/or to book a place contact 01962 845816 leaving your name and contact number and name of course.
Museums and Archives Display
Botley Museums and Archives display is an exciting outreach display containing local maps, photographs, reproduction archival material, archaeology, social history and many important objects which capture the character and history of Botley.
With links to Hampshire Records, Eastleigh Museum, Hampshire Museums Service and the Library Service you can find out how to find out more about your home, your ancestors, your old school or your local community.
There is always something new to see with a regularly changing programme of special exhibitions. Visit www.allsaintsbotley.org.uk for more information about current and future displays. Visit http://www3.hants.gov.uk/arts for lots more information and resources.