Reports earlier this week of Rushcliffe Borough Council’s review of Lutterell Hall have been widely commented on in the community, here we show the economics behind the ideas and leader of the council Cllr Simon Robinson addresses the community too.
In the agenda papers prepared for next week’s meeting of Full Cabinet at Rushcliffe Borough Council, the financial arguments are laid out: All text from the agenda papers here
‘The Council’s community contact centre has been based at West Bridgford Police Station since April 2011 as part of a very successful partnership with Nottinghamshire police which has seen the Council provide front desk services for the police in West Bridgford.
The Council operates its face to face services from the police station, with residents coming to the site for services such as revenues or benefits meetings, appointments to see planning officers, taxi licensing and housing options as well as the police face to face service.’
‘The arrangement is part of an agreement with the police whereby the Council paid for the capital investment in the building to convert it to the contact centre and in return have received rent-free occupation of the site. However, the police have recently taken a decision to vacate West Bridgford Police Station and base their staff in another West Bridgford location. Nottinghamshire Police would like to dispose of the current site and has served notice on the Council to leave the premises by August 2020.
‘This report is not about the future location of the Council’s West Bridgford Contact Centre but rather whether the Council should, when the police market the police station, also market the adjacent Lutterell Hall for disposal at the same time as it may be advantageous with regards achieving a strong capital return for the site. The recommendation of this report is not to dispose of the site, but to test the market for disposal.’
The report adds:
- Lutterell Hall is situated on the corner of Church Drive and Bridgford Road in Central West Bridgford. The main hall is 15 metres x 12 metres and has a capacity of 190 people, with an ancillary room which is used on a week day basis (term-time) by St Giles Playgroup. The venue is hired to regular users and one-off celebrations, with a summary of usage types and frequency as follows:
Despite several marketing campaigns usage of the hall has fallen over recent years. Utilisation rates (based on 11 hours available to hire per day) has fallen from 53% in 2016/17 down to 46% in 2018/19. Attendance numbers have similarly fallen from 32,200 in 2016/17 down to 23,700 in 2018/19 representing a drop of 8,500 attendances. During this period there has been an increase in competition from other function rooms and a number of regular hirers have found alternative venues or have cancelled bookings due to poor attendance.