Trust set up to help Corn Hall regeneration
The management of a landmark building in Diss is set to be transferred to a charitable trust in the New Year to help aid its �2m regeneration.The Corn Hall secured a �70,000 grant from South Norfolk Council earlier this year to begin a major refurbishment of the 19th century building.
The management of a landmark building in Diss is set to be transferred to a charitable trust in the New Year to help aid its �2m regeneration.
The Corn Hall secured a �70,000 grant from South Norfolk Council earlier this year to begin a major refurbishment of the 19th century building.
Diss Town Council, which owns the listed venue in St Nicholas Street, has agreed to a lease to the Diss Corn Hall Trust as part of its plans to turn it into a 21st century arts, cultural and community centre.
Civic leaders approved the transfer of the management of the building to the charitable trust from January 1 at a special meeting on last night , but were unable to agree on how much the town council should contribute to long-term structural maintenance.
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The independent control of the Corn Hall will enable the trustees to start work on employing an architect to complete a design brief for the venue to be renovated into a multi-purpose community hall, theatre and cinema.
Sue Reeves, Corn Hall project co-ordinator, said the formulation of a design brief would aid the charitable trust when it came to funding applications for the work to the Heritage Lottery Fund and other sources.
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But Graham Minshull said he was concerned that the town council was recommending giving the trust �10,000 to �15,000 a year for the structural maintenance of the Corn Hall without seeing an up-to-date business plan.
'We are dealing with taxpayers' money and we need to know when it is going to break even. It is a lot of money and I feel we need to be prudent. I think it is a great project but I think we need to be up to date with the facts and figures,' he said.
Councillors agreed to wait until the town's precept discussions before setting a maintenance budget.
Deborah Sarson, town clerk, added that the Corn Hall trust aimed to make the facility 'self-sustaining' and the refurbishment would help ease the financial burden on the council.