Issue - meetings
Future of Town Hall and No. 10 St. Owen's Street, Hereford
Meeting: 29/09/2022 - Cabinet (Item 152)
To agree which of the presented recommendations, if any, offer a preferred way forward regarding the future of the Town Hall and 10 St. Owens Street and, to invite Cabinet to propose alternative recommendations for further development and consideration.
The cabinet member commissioning, procurement and assets introduced the report. An amendment to recommendation (a) in the report was noted where the proposed transfer of the freehold would be to Hereford City Council or its nominee.
Cabinet members discussed the report and it was highlighted that:
· The preferred outcome was to transfer the freehold of the Town Hall so that Hereford City Council could remain in its historic home;
· Transfer of the freehold would allow the primary user of the building to own and control it;
· There was public support for retention of the building as a public building;
· The council had many pressures on its finances and a transfer would allow the city council to take their plans for the building forward.
Group leaders presented the views and queries of their groups. There was support for the retention of the building as a public building and for the transfer to the city council. In response to queries raised it was noted that:
· The heads of terms would be subject to further discussion and the council did not want to shackle the agreement;
· Work to address dry rot was due to start imminently and detail of other works required would be provided in writing.
It was resolved that:
a) Subject to agreement of head of terms by 31 December 2022, to transfer the freehold of the Town Hall and No. 10 St Owens Street to Hereford City Council or its nominee with the transfer to be completed by 31 October 2023, and in the event that these deadlines are not met to complete an option appraisal which will include disposal on the open market; and
b) The Director of Resources and Assurance be authorised, subject to consultation with the Cabinet Member for Commissioning, Procurement and Assets, to take all operational decisions necessary to implement the preferred recommendation.