No stay of execution for the Berwyn Centre

(Pic: Digicase Photography via BBC Wales)

 

The Berwyn Centre is an arts, entertainment and community centre in the village of Nantymoel in the Ogwr Valley. Originally a Miners’ Welfare Hall, it was saved from closure in the 1970s. After falling into a state of disrepair, the centre is to close at the end of the year, and be subsequently demolished.

A special meeting was held by Bridgend Council cabinet on Monday to discuss the matter, following a decision by the committee responsible to call it in. The cabinet decided against postponing demolition “until a full intrusive survey” is carried out “to establish beyond doubt the structural integrity of the building.”

The Glamorgan Gazette report that the council cabinet believe enough surveys have been done already.

Efforts will be made “to secure and safeguard paintings and artifacts within the building that were of value and significance to the community.”

It’s claimed that the centre has fallen into disrepair to the tune of £800,000. You have to ask how this was allowed to happen in the first place, especially if it’s now so bad, it poses a (supposed) risk to the public. BCBC have said it would cost £400,000 to make the building immediately safe, with another £400,000 on top of that needed to secure its longer term future.

The cabinet report says that, while the original cost of demolishing the centre was priced at £100,000, that figure didn’t include the costs of asbestos removal. BCBC will now pick up any demolition costs above £100,000, and councillors have requested that none of that comes out of the £200,000 earmarked towards a replacement centre.

There are concerns that no “interim (community) facilities have been identified for all user groups”as “a matter of urgency”. The £200,000 will only part-fund a new centre, other funds would need to be found too (i.e. lottery and charity funding). This isn’t expected be found until 2015 – BCBC have extended the timetable to secure funding to reflect that.

So Nantymoel could be waiting until 2016-2017 at the earliest for a proper replacement, and only if BCBC can secure the funds. BCBC will now seek to set up a “representative community group” (committee’s – the Welsh solution to everything) to bid for funding, and possibly run any new centre.

BCBC will also be obliged to “give commitments to the community” should any bid for funding “be unsuccessful”, which you’ld expect them to.

You also have to wonder – if it would cost £400,000 to make the building safe immediately, why don’t BCBC just match their £200,000 with another £200,000 from elsewhere? That’s cheaper than building a completely new centre, isn’t it? But maybe they’re concerned about ongoing viability, or deep down, acknowledge that a new centre won’t be built.

The story also has a personal significance for BBC Wales’ Vaughan Roderick. The Berwyn Centre was named in honour of his uncle, Berwyn Roderick. He was a teacher, and indirectly save the centre from closure in the 1970s, by encouraging Cambrian Theatre Company – who took over the centre – to go into acting in the first place.

I wouldn’t go so far as to say the Berwyn Centre is “iconic”, but it’s the first significant building you see when you come into Nantymoel from “over the Bwlch”. It’s fair to say – the art deco frontage at least – is a local landmark.

You can’t really blame the council for doing this when they have to find millions of pounds in savings over the next few years. If the building’s unsafe, it’s probably best for it to go.

The Berwyn Centre is just another casualty of austerity – the arts, culture and leisure are soft targets when cuts are made, as highlighted by today’s report from the WLGA. Standing aside education and social services, you can understand why.

It’s also the slow, lingering death of proudly self-contained communities. When you think about what has replaced that – from the 1930s right through to the present – it’s rather depressing.

Owen

  • I think it's worth pointing our that the building is only in this state of disrepair due to the council's neglect – despite them being trustees of the building and rsponsible for maintenance – and also that it is believed that the building is still structurally sound by an indepent surveyor based in Mountain Ash, in fact it seems the building is still plumb and hasn't moved at all in over 100 years.
    The austerity measures argument is pretty galling for a community that has seen investment in every part of the borough but ours for decades. There seems to be no lack of funds for unnecessary replacement of roads in Bridgend town centre, a pointless and ugly walkway and new bridge along the river (coincidentally opposite the council offices), replacement of bus shelters on Cheapside even though they were only placed there as a temporary measure when the new bus station was being built and the development of a new £3.2M marina in Porthcawl.

    The building was breaking even or turning a small profit for years before the council closed the auditorium, meaning the centre was no longer able to make money.

    The reason the building is being demolished is because the council have planned to get rid of it for years – this is why the meeting to demolish was called at a time when our representative was unavailable to attend and why the concerns of the scrutiny committee were ignored in the second decision.
    Disturbingly, one of the concerns was for the nursery and OAP groups which use the centre not having an alternative location in place, the cabinet have made it clear that they couldn't care less for the welfare of the most vulnerable people in the valley!

  • I think it's worth pointing our that the building is only in this state of disrepair due to the council's neglect – despite them being trustees of the building and rsponsible for maintenance – and also that it is believed that the building is still structurally sound by an indepent surveyor based in Mountain Ash, in fact it seems the building is still plumb and hasn't moved at all in over 100 years.
    The austerity measures argument is pretty galling for a community that has seen investment in every part of the borough but ours for decades. There seems to be no lack of funds for unnecessary replacement of roads in Bridgend town centre, a pointless and ugly walkway and new bridge along the river (coincidentally opposite the council offices), replacement of bus shelters on Cheapside even though they were only placed there as a temporary measure when the new bus station was being built and the development of a new £3.2M marina in Porthcawl.

    The building was breaking even or turning a small profit for years before the council closed the auditorium, meaning the centre was no longer able to make money.

    The reason the building is being demolished is because the council have planned to get rid of it for years – this is why the meeting to demolish was called at a time when our representative was unavailable to attend and why the concerns of the scrutiny committee were ignored in the second decision.
    Disturbingly, one of the concerns was for the nursery and OAP groups which use the centre not having an alternative location in place, the cabinet have made it clear that they couldn't care less for the welfare of the most vulnerable people in the valley!

  • QUOTE: 'You can't really blame the council for doing this when they have to find millions of pounds in savings over the next few years. If the building's unsafe, it's probably best for it to go.'
    The scrutiny committee recommended an independant survey, it was denied by the cabinet because they said their own was adequate, yet the recommendation was done because it was brought to light to the scrutiny committee by a member of Ogmore Valley, whom asked an independant surveyor to do the same 'visual' inspection that the council did. The independant surveyor stated that the building was structurally sound and the immediate improvements were superficial.

    So it begs the question, as us members of the community, why are we denied the chance to confirm that the building 'needs' to come down. Why do we HAVE to believe the councils advisor when the councils motive is that it is a burden economically. The council are denying the 'inhabitants of Nantymoel' ('inhabitants of Nantymoel' are the OWNERS of the Berwyn and it's land) the right to make that decision, they are also denying us the chance of negotiation!

  • QUOTE: 'You can't really blame the council for doing this when they have to find millions of pounds in savings over the next few years. If the building's unsafe, it's probably best for it to go.'
    The scrutiny committee recommended an independant survey, it was denied by the cabinet because they said their own was adequate, yet the recommendation was done because it was brought to light to the scrutiny committee by a member of Ogmore Valley, whom asked an independant surveyor to do the same 'visual' inspection that the council did. The independant surveyor stated that the building was structurally sound and the immediate improvements were superficial.

    So it begs the question, as us members of the community, why are we denied the chance to confirm that the building 'needs' to come down. Why do we HAVE to believe the councils advisor when the councils motive is that it is a burden economically. The council are denying the 'inhabitants of Nantymoel' ('inhabitants of Nantymoel' are the OWNERS of the Berwyn and it's land) the right to make that decision, they are also denying us the chance of negotiation!

  • Anonymous

    The truth in this matter BCBC does not want anything put into the ogmore valley .
    we have nothing up this valley,if they take this landmarks away we will have nothing left. This is a sad state of affairs .
    Miners risked their lives in the coal mines and also put their hard earn'd cash into this building it may not mean anything to BCBC but means a lot to the people of the valley. The council was told years ago about the roof by the people who used the building a lot but the BCBC would not listen to the people, like they will not listen now … BCBC only want to do what they see fit to do . A good few years ago there was plenty of activity such as entertainment in this building and it was holding its own. For some reason all that stopped, my personal opinion to this is that the BCBC had made their minds up years ago to run this building down. BCBC are denying this valley every effort in negotiations with anything that is being put forward to them.It is laughable when they say they have £200,000 to put a new building up with the understanding that further mommies would have to be put towards the building !!!! Why have they not put this money toward getting the roof done in the first place. The interest of the money mines put in surely would have coverd some repairs that needed doing there in the first place so what has happen'd to that money to that money. Many questions needs to be answered. Such short time given to the valley to try and saves this building it is a JOKE !!

  • Anonymous

    The truth in this matter BCBC does not want anything put into the ogmore valley .
    we have nothing up this valley,if they take this landmarks away we will have nothing left. This is a sad state of affairs .
    Miners risked their lives in the coal mines and also put their hard earn'd cash into this building it may not mean anything to BCBC but means a lot to the people of the valley. The council was told years ago about the roof by the people who used the building a lot but the BCBC would not listen to the people, like they will not listen now … BCBC only want to do what they see fit to do . A good few years ago there was plenty of activity such as entertainment in this building and it was holding its own. For some reason all that stopped, my personal opinion to this is that the BCBC had made their minds up years ago to run this building down. BCBC are denying this valley every effort in negotiations with anything that is being put forward to them.It is laughable when they say they have £200,000 to put a new building up with the understanding that further mommies would have to be put towards the building !!!! Why have they not put this money toward getting the roof done in the first place. The interest of the money mines put in surely would have coverd some repairs that needed doing there in the first place so what has happen'd to that money to that money. Many questions needs to be answered. Such short time given to the valley to try and saves this building it is a JOKE !!

  • Sadly us residents have been let down badly.. in this day and age where we appear as a country to be pumping loads of funding into social,welfare and ethnic diversity yet we are unable to save our own heritage… this was once a beautiful building and could be again providing a theatre and heart for the community. Ogmore Valley is the forgotten valley. Tell most people in England where I am from and they associate it with depression and sadly suicide – We don't want to be re- known for this we are proud of who we are and where we come from…

  • Sadly us residents have been let down badly.. in this day and age where we appear as a country to be pumping loads of funding into social,welfare and ethnic diversity yet we are unable to save our own heritage… this was once a beautiful building and could be again providing a theatre and heart for the community. Ogmore Valley is the forgotten valley. Tell most people in England where I am from and they associate it with depression and sadly suicide – We don't want to be re- known for this we are proud of who we are and where we come from…

  • Thanks for the comments, everyone.

    The old miners institutes do tend to be – excuse my language – built like brick shithouses, so I do wonder myself how the building was allowed to get into the state it's reported to be in.

    BCBC are pointing fingers at the Rainbow Coalition, but Labour have had 4 years to deal with it themselves, so as funkymotha has said, I get the impression that BCBC have been looking for an excuse to close it. £85,000 a year is no small sum, but they're almost spending the amount it would take to secure the building, on closing and demolishing it.

    You won't get any argument from me that some BCBC projects down the years seem a waste of money. Garw, Ogwr, and some other parts of the county like Pencoed, don't seem to get very much. What I don't understand is that, if BCBC want the Berwyn Centre off their books, why haven't they just handed it over to the community/co-op – on the condition that the community can raise another £200,000 or so to make repairs?

    I think the reason they haven't is that, if there were an accident and someone got hurt because of the building's condition, they would be legally accountable. I don't think they're 100% confident that the additional funds will be found.

    You better believe that BCBC will want to build something to replace it. Fully expect to see cabinet members in hard hats and flourescent jackets in Nantymoel when the time comes. Of course, they won't be giving thumbs up to Gazette photographers when the bulldozers move it.

  • Thanks for the comments, everyone.

    The old miners institutes do tend to be – excuse my language – built like brick shithouses, so I do wonder myself how the building was allowed to get into the state it's reported to be in.

    BCBC are pointing fingers at the Rainbow Coalition, but Labour have had 4 years to deal with it themselves, so as funkymotha has said, I get the impression that BCBC have been looking for an excuse to close it. £85,000 a year is no small sum, but they're almost spending the amount it would take to secure the building, on closing and demolishing it.

    You won't get any argument from me that some BCBC projects down the years seem a waste of money. Garw, Ogwr, and some other parts of the county like Pencoed, don't seem to get very much. What I don't understand is that, if BCBC want the Berwyn Centre off their books, why haven't they just handed it over to the community/co-op – on the condition that the community can raise another £200,000 or so to make repairs?

    I think the reason they haven't is that, if there were an accident and someone got hurt because of the building's condition, they would be legally accountable. I don't think they're 100% confident that the additional funds will be found.

    You better believe that BCBC will want to build something to replace it. Fully expect to see cabinet members in hard hats and flourescent jackets in Nantymoel when the time comes. Of course, they won't be giving thumbs up to Gazette photographers when the bulldozers move it.

  • Anonymous

    They are all rubbing their hands at the amount of money they can sell all that old stone for that is why they are rushing ahead with the closure and demolition, there was no survey carried out and they have now admitted the building is structurally sound. The people of Nant-y-moel are not pushovers and we will fight this to the end, i may not be from the Ogmore valley but i care about it as much as those miners who gave so much to build the Berwyn in the first place. We owe it to them to do everything in our power to save this amazing piece of history.

    The BCBC would rather spend our money on cheap and ugly looking statues and road works that are taking months to complete in town, instead of saving a piece of Welsh history.

  • Anonymous

    They are all rubbing their hands at the amount of money they can sell all that old stone for that is why they are rushing ahead with the closure and demolition, there was no survey carried out and they have now admitted the building is structurally sound. The people of Nant-y-moel are not pushovers and we will fight this to the end, i may not be from the Ogmore valley but i care about it as much as those miners who gave so much to build the Berwyn in the first place. We owe it to them to do everything in our power to save this amazing piece of history.

    The BCBC would rather spend our money on cheap and ugly looking statues and road works that are taking months to complete in town, instead of saving a piece of Welsh history.

  • Bridgend CBC, as Trustees for the building, are responsible for its maintenance.

    It should be noted that until quite recently, few, if any, of the councillors were informed that they were Trustees. All the decisions about the Trust were taken by Bridgend CBC Cabinet, who claim to be able to act as representatives of the Trustees.

    It seems to have come as a great surprise to the councillors that they had any responsibility for the building. I wonder why the councillors were never informed of their status as Trustees? It does seem a strange ommission.

    The failure of the Bridgend CBC Cabinet, in their role as representatives of the Trustees, to maintain the building is shocking to me. In 2007 the auditorium was closed because the roof is leaking. Rather than repair the roof so that the auditorium could be re-opened and the building start earning its keep once more, the Trustees in the form of Bridgend CBC Cabinet, did nothing.

    No intrusive structural survey of the building has been carried out. How the BCBC engineers can claim that the building is structurally unsafe I am at a loss to explain.

    The only survey which has been carried out is a condition survey, which found some render falling off, a leaking roof, a tree growing in through one of the windows and a few other small defects. These are minor issues which can be repaired for a few tens of thousands of pounds, not the hundreds of thousands which BCBC claims it will cost to repair the building. Futher, how can anyone estimate the cost of repairs if no intrusive survey has been carried out? There is nothing on which to base such an estimate.

    I believe that this whole thing is a spiteful dig at the people of Nant-y-moel and Pricetown.

    We will not stop fighting this closure until an independent intrusive structural survey has been carried out which shows that the building is too expensive to repair.

  • Bridgend CBC, as Trustees for the building, are responsible for its maintenance.

    It should be noted that until quite recently, few, if any, of the councillors were informed that they were Trustees. All the decisions about the Trust were taken by Bridgend CBC Cabinet, who claim to be able to act as representatives of the Trustees.

    It seems to have come as a great surprise to the councillors that they had any responsibility for the building. I wonder why the councillors were never informed of their status as Trustees? It does seem a strange ommission.

    The failure of the Bridgend CBC Cabinet, in their role as representatives of the Trustees, to maintain the building is shocking to me. In 2007 the auditorium was closed because the roof is leaking. Rather than repair the roof so that the auditorium could be re-opened and the building start earning its keep once more, the Trustees in the form of Bridgend CBC Cabinet, did nothing.

    No intrusive structural survey of the building has been carried out. How the BCBC engineers can claim that the building is structurally unsafe I am at a loss to explain.

    The only survey which has been carried out is a condition survey, which found some render falling off, a leaking roof, a tree growing in through one of the windows and a few other small defects. These are minor issues which can be repaired for a few tens of thousands of pounds, not the hundreds of thousands which BCBC claims it will cost to repair the building. Futher, how can anyone estimate the cost of repairs if no intrusive survey has been carried out? There is nothing on which to base such an estimate.

    I believe that this whole thing is a spiteful dig at the people of Nant-y-moel and Pricetown.

    We will not stop fighting this closure until an independent intrusive structural survey has been carried out which shows that the building is too expensive to repair.

  • Didn't Ogwr Borough Council take over/part take over the Berwyn Centre when it was saved in the 70's? If so, it should've been obvious they were trustees, shouldn't it?

  • Didn't Ogwr Borough Council take over/part take over the Berwyn Centre when it was saved in the 70's? If so, it should've been obvious they were trustees, shouldn't it?

  • @Owen

    Maybe, but that was a long time ago and the latest set of councillors do not seem to have been informed properly of their responsibilities.

  • @Owen

    Maybe, but that was a long time ago and the latest set of councillors do not seem to have been informed properly of their responsibilities.

  • What happened in 1974 was that the then Ogwr Borough Council became Trustees of the charity which owns the Berwyn Centre. Bridgend CBC became Trustees when Ogwr BC was replaced by Bridgend CBC.

    The owners of the building are all the residents of Nant-y-moel and Pricetown, as Benficiaries of the charity.

    Bridgend CBC does not own the building, but it does have a duty, under the terms of its Trusteeship, to maintain the building.

  • What happened in 1974 was that the then Ogwr Borough Council became Trustees of the charity which owns the Berwyn Centre. Bridgend CBC became Trustees when Ogwr BC was replaced by Bridgend CBC.

    The owners of the building are all the residents of Nant-y-moel and Pricetown, as Benficiaries of the charity.

    Bridgend CBC does not own the building, but it does have a duty, under the terms of its Trusteeship, to maintain the building.

  • If that's the case, Anthony, then there's probably good grounds for a legal challenge. I would imagine BCBC will have covered all the necessary ground there though.

  • If that's the case, Anthony, then there's probably good grounds for a legal challenge. I would imagine BCBC will have covered all the necessary ground there though.

  • Anonymous

    @ Owen
    I highly doubt they have covered everything legally. They expected the community to just roll over let BCBC do what it wants, they are in for a shock if they think they are closing the Berwyn let alone destroying it. Nantymoel will and is fighting them they are not touching our builing!

  • Anonymous

    @ Owen
    I highly doubt they have covered everything legally. They expected the community to just roll over let BCBC do what it wants, they are in for a shock if they think they are closing the Berwyn let alone destroying it. Nantymoel will and is fighting them they are not touching our builing!

  • Jeff Jones

    What is really interesting from my point of view as the Leader of Bridgend CBC between 1995 and 2004 is that I didn't know that a charity known as the Nantymoel Workmen's Institute even existed until I read the cabinet and scrutiny papers. The document dated 31 January 1994 presented to the Scrutiny Committee states that the Trustee is Ogwr BC which as everyone knows ceased to exist in April 1996. Perhaps someone could tell me when Bridgend CBC became the Trustee and who informed the Charity Commission? That is ,of course , assuming that they were informed of the fact that local government reorganisation had taken place. No one has ever informed me of any correspondence between the authority and the Charity Comission concerning the building. Although I can understand why the Leisure officers Bridgend inherited from Ogwr would not want me to know the true status of the building. Another interesting point is if the Council is the trustee then why hasn't the Council being receiving annual reports on the Charity since 1996. According to the Charity Commission the accounts presented by the Council are not detailed because the annual income is less than £10000. In 2012 the Charity's income was just £232. If that is the case then the obvious question to ask is where did the income come from to support the £85000 annual revenue costs mentioned in the Council's press statement announcing the closure?

  • Jeff Jones

    What is really interesting from my point of view as the Leader of Bridgend CBC between 1995 and 2004 is that I didn't know that a charity known as the Nantymoel Workmen's Institute even existed until I read the cabinet and scrutiny papers. The document dated 31 January 1994 presented to the Scrutiny Committee states that the Trustee is Ogwr BC which as everyone knows ceased to exist in April 1996. Perhaps someone could tell me when Bridgend CBC became the Trustee and who informed the Charity Commission? That is ,of course , assuming that they were informed of the fact that local government reorganisation had taken place. No one has ever informed me of any correspondence between the authority and the Charity Comission concerning the building. Although I can understand why the Leisure officers Bridgend inherited from Ogwr would not want me to know the true status of the building. Another interesting point is if the Council is the trustee then why hasn't the Council being receiving annual reports on the Charity since 1996. According to the Charity Commission the accounts presented by the Council are not detailed because the annual income is less than £10000. In 2012 the Charity's income was just £232. If that is the case then the obvious question to ask is where did the income come from to support the £85000 annual revenue costs mentioned in the Council's press statement announcing the closure?

  • Hate to add this jeff as you have been so honest, but, there could be repercussions for you personally, as a trustee (whether you knew it or not) you are liable for the said same negligence that BCBC are now showing. It isn't just BCBC because each and every councillor for the last however many years are also liable. There is no time limit so we could go back 10 or 15 years or whenever the negligence started.

    In paragraph 9 of the deed of trust is states that accounts must be kept seperate for the said charity, however, it seems the council have not done so.

    There are so many holes and loops in this it could be picked apart by a mere layperson like myself, it would be a gold mine for a barrister!

  • Hate to add this jeff as you have been so honest, but, there could be repercussions for you personally, as a trustee (whether you knew it or not) you are liable for the said same negligence that BCBC are now showing. It isn't just BCBC because each and every councillor for the last however many years are also liable. There is no time limit so we could go back 10 or 15 years or whenever the negligence started.

    In paragraph 9 of the deed of trust is states that accounts must be kept seperate for the said charity, however, it seems the council have not done so.

    There are so many holes and loops in this it could be picked apart by a mere layperson like myself, it would be a gold mine for a barrister!

  • Jeff Jones

    I'm afraid the issue is post 2004 one as far as upkeep of the building is concerned and has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with the administrations that I led . Given the fact that councillors were definitely not informed of the existence of the Charity in 1996 it raises some interesting questions about the building's actual status and whether any public money should have been spent on it in my opinion. The Rainbow Alliance commissioned a report on the physical state of all leisure buildings in the borough and then never published it. The report was an independent one and would have included the Berwyn Centre. It was also the Rainbow Alliance that closed the auditorium in 2007 for health and safety reasons . A decisio thta should have caused councillors to ask some serious questions about the state of the building. The Councillor for Nantymoel at the time was also a member of the Rainbow Alliance cabinet. It was under the Rainbow Alliance that certain officers decided that because the councillors were not prepared to take any decisions then the way to force their hand was through neglect. They tried the same tactic with Maesteg swimming pool but we found out and forced the new Labour council in 2008 to spend money to keep the pool open. I'm sure that if the Rainbow Alliance had won in 2008 Maesteg swimming pool would have closed because of the failure to carry out essential repairs in the previous 4 years. As for the Berwyn Centre I have already written to the Charity Commission asking them to look into the way the Nantymoel Workmen's Charity has been run since 1994.

  • Jeff Jones

    I'm afraid the issue is post 2004 one as far as upkeep of the building is concerned and has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with the administrations that I led . Given the fact that councillors were definitely not informed of the existence of the Charity in 1996 it raises some interesting questions about the building's actual status and whether any public money should have been spent on it in my opinion. The Rainbow Alliance commissioned a report on the physical state of all leisure buildings in the borough and then never published it. The report was an independent one and would have included the Berwyn Centre. It was also the Rainbow Alliance that closed the auditorium in 2007 for health and safety reasons . A decisio thta should have caused councillors to ask some serious questions about the state of the building. The Councillor for Nantymoel at the time was also a member of the Rainbow Alliance cabinet. It was under the Rainbow Alliance that certain officers decided that because the councillors were not prepared to take any decisions then the way to force their hand was through neglect. They tried the same tactic with Maesteg swimming pool but we found out and forced the new Labour council in 2008 to spend money to keep the pool open. I'm sure that if the Rainbow Alliance had won in 2008 Maesteg swimming pool would have closed because of the failure to carry out essential repairs in the previous 4 years. As for the Berwyn Centre I have already written to the Charity Commission asking them to look into the way the Nantymoel Workmen's Charity has been run since 1994.

  • It's already been done Jeff, and the reply was not as we thought. It seems 'it does not fall within our jurisdiction'. The problem i see with the charity commision is that they are there for the trustees not the benficiaries. The deeds which the trustees hold is 111 years old and I guess they did not think someone would dare demolish it so there is no safety feature with those exact words.
    So from the council's point of view they have 'done' the right thing according to charity law.
    Morally they are off the mark. We have a petition of over 1200 people so far and counting, they might appease the charity commision but they will not appease their electors.
    Let's hope your letter will stir them into action.

  • It's already been done Jeff, and the reply was not as we thought. It seems 'it does not fall within our jurisdiction'. The problem i see with the charity commision is that they are there for the trustees not the benficiaries. The deeds which the trustees hold is 111 years old and I guess they did not think someone would dare demolish it so there is no safety feature with those exact words.
    So from the council's point of view they have 'done' the right thing according to charity law.
    Morally they are off the mark. We have a petition of over 1200 people so far and counting, they might appease the charity commision but they will not appease their electors.
    Let's hope your letter will stir them into action.

  • We've now got the petition up to around 1500 and will be presented to the Mayor next Wednesday.

    I had a letter from BCBC in which it was stated that the state of the building isn't really in question, but the fact the council can no longer afford to fund it as they have other priorities.

    Save The Berwyn group have tried several times to contact/negotiate with the council and the group are being ignored despite the mandate of the people.

    It was stated they were in negotitions with another group, but that group refuse to tell the community what has transpired from these negotitions.

    What has transpired is that BCBC have yet to apply for planning permission to demolish and have started giving away all fixtures and fittings.

  • We've now got the petition up to around 1500 and will be presented to the Mayor next Wednesday.

    I had a letter from BCBC in which it was stated that the state of the building isn't really in question, but the fact the council can no longer afford to fund it as they have other priorities.

    Save The Berwyn group have tried several times to contact/negotiate with the council and the group are being ignored despite the mandate of the people.

    It was stated they were in negotitions with another group, but that group refuse to tell the community what has transpired from these negotitions.

    What has transpired is that BCBC have yet to apply for planning permission to demolish and have started giving away all fixtures and fittings.

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