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Councillors fear for town hall’s future

Concerns have been raised that some of Bourne’s traditions and charm may be lost forever if the town hall is sold to a private owner.

Bourne Town Council wrote to Lincolnshire County Council requesting the
right to be able to 
continue to use the town hall in North Street as a centrepiece for the town to hang its Christmas lights, mount its tree and fly a 
flag.

But a meeting of Bourne Town Council’s amenities committee on Tuesday night was told the county council, 
which owns the town hall, said it could give no assurances the town council would be able to continue its arrangements if the building was sold.

Bourne Town Hall is currently used as Bourne Town Council offices and houses the South Kesteven District Council customer service office.

However both bodies are due to move into the Corn Exchange, where renovation works is set to be completed on March 6.

This would leave the town hall and the library in South Street, which is also moving into the “one-stop-shop” community access point in the Corn Exchange, unoccupied.

Andy McCarter from Lincolnshire County Council said: “At this stage, a final decision hasn’t been 
taken.

“In the coming months we’ll be looking at whether we can find any other use for these buildings. If either of them is not required, we’ll sell it.

“Whichever option we go with, our key priority will be ensuring taxpayers get the best value for money.”

Mayor of Bourne Helen Powell said she was concerned that a building at the heart of the Bourne community could be lost.

Following the concerns raised at the meeting, town councillors have drafted a letter to the county council asking what it has in mind for the building in the 
future.

The town hall was built in 1821 based on the designs of local architect Bryan Browning. The building, which cost £2,451 15s 1d, was used to house the weekly market and courtroom.

Court sessions were heard in the town hall until 2008.

It was originally touted as a location for the community access p oint.

But the building was ruled out because of the lack of disabled access and the cost of installing a lift.

 

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