The future of these historic and public Calderdale to be decided by leaders

Five potential transfers of council buildings to community control will be considered by Calderdale Council’s Cabinet members when they meet on Monday July 5.

Friday, 2nd July 2021, 4:45 pm
Skircoat Library, Shelf Village Hall and Library, and Heptonstall Museum
Skircoat Library, Shelf Village Hall and Library, and Heptonstall Museum

Cabinet members are asked to determine which potential transfers should progress to full business case.

If successful, this would ultimately mean they would be transferred to community groups to run.

Full business cases must be ready within six months, councillors have been told.

And for some other community buildings, it looks like the end of the line.

Cabinet members are asked to agree that officers should work with Friends of Heptonstall Museum regarding Heptonstall Museum, Royd Regeneration in respect of Mytholmroyd Library, Ripponden Parish Council regarding Ripponden Library, Shelf Village Hall Community Association in respect of Shelf Village Hall and Library, and Skircoat Community Hub regarding Skircoat Library.

They are among buildings that would otherwise remain closed and ultimately be disposed of following decisions taken as a result of the Future Council programme against a background of service cuts the council has to make in order to balance its budget – cuts which have been controversial.

Cabinet is also asked to agree that expressions of interest in some other cases are not progressed as they do not meet the basic criteria for community asset transfers (CATs) – these relate to the William Henry Smith School’s interest in Southowram Library and Great Heights Academy Trust and Stainland and District Parish Council’s interest in Stainland Library.

Reasons Cabinet is being given in both cases is that the bids do not bring any real additional community benefits for local people or involve the community in any meaningful way in the running and use of the building.

Cabinet members are asked to agree that officers now dispose of those two properties.

Members are also asked to note that expressions of interest were received but subsequently withdrawn in three other cases, William Henry Smith in respect of Brighouse Civic Hall, OnTrak Community Initiative in respect of Shelf Village Hall and Library and Brighouse Theatre productions also in respect of Brighouse Civic Hall.

No expressions of interest were received in respect of two buildings, and in accordance with Cabinet’s decision last November both Greetland and Hipperholme library buildings are now being disposed of.

Expressions of interest in the historic Jacobean building Clay House, West Vale, were delayed for legal reasons and officers will work with Greetland and Stainland ward councillors in the coming months to explore interest in taking on responsibility for it, Cabinet has been told.

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