Beccles Town Council’s takeover of Blyburgate Hall, car park and ambulance station nears resolution
PUBLISHED: 16:35 21 September 2017
Archant © 2017
The future of a popular public space looks certain to have been settled after an agreement was put in place for it to be taken over by the town council.
Blyburgate Hall in Beccles had previously been home to the town’s unit of the St John Ambulance, however after it was unable to secure a new leader, it folded.
In February 2016 it was agreed that the hall would be handed back to the town, with Beccles Town Council agreeing to take it over.
This is now within touching distance of becoming a reality, after the engrossments for the transfer were signed at a council meeting this week.
As part of the agreement, the council has also purchased Blyburgate car park and the former ambulance station.
Richard Stubbings, mayor of Beccles, said: “We will now be keeping the hall and running it in the trust of the people of Beccles.
“The hall is very well used - there always seems to be somebody in there, almost every day, and it would have been a very big loss if anything would have happened to it.”
The council will now begin considering how to use the car park and ambulance station, however Mr Stubbings insists at least part of the site will still be dedicated to parking.
He said: “Whatever is decided about the car park and ambulance station we will certainly make sure the hall still has parking available - particularly disabled parking.
“We have to look into what the town’s needs are, and what the council’s needs are. It is an exciting time for us as a council and we have to look at where we are.”
The hall, which serves the community in a number of ways, including hosting Spotlight theatre group and zumba classes, will continue to be run in the same manner, only under the council’s ownership.
Mr Stubbings added: “We have no plans of changing anything with regards to how the hall is run, though there will probably be need for renovations at some stage. We have got a lot of thoughts about the car park and ambulance station, but nothing has been decided yet. Everything is on the table, however, there will always be car parking available for the hall.”