Frustrated Haverhill Town Council drops plans to buy Corn Exchange

Corn Exchange - Haverhill


PICTURE: Mecha Morton
Corn Exchange - Haverhill PICTURE: Mecha Morton

Haverhill Town Council has abandoned its attempts to buy the old Corn Exchange in Withersfield Road.

The decision to withdraw the offer made in September 2016 follows months of efforts by the council to get the vendor to speak with them.

Haverhill town clerk, Colin Poole

Haverhill town clerk, Colin Poole

Town clerk Colin Poole explained: “At the time, councillors agreed to offer above the asking price in order to secure a quick purchase.

“However, we have never even had the offer formally accepted, nor got to the stage where we could appoint solicitors.

“As far as we understand, the vendor has told their agent there is an unspecified issue in getting permission from their lenders to dispose of the property, as part of a portfolio, to a third party who in turn was to sell that building to us.

“We were not particularly happy to have to accommodate that arrangement but it is now 12 months on and seemingly nothing has changed anyway.

“There has been zero progress, zero communication from the vendor and zero prospect of any of that changing in the foreseeable future.

“In the meantime, the funds held by the council that were nominally earmarked for the Corn Exchange sit losing value against inflation.

“Councillors have concluded that the time has come to turn to other projects which we can deliver for the people of Haverhill.”

The council will now focus on the expansion of the arts centre, the consideration of the future of Bevan House and the investment in the newly-acquired Leiston Community Centre.