Public meeting to discuss Clare Castle Country Park’s future
A public meeting is taking place in Clare on Tuesday (29) to debate proposals that have been tabled for the future management of the town’s country park.
The meeting at 7pm in the town hall has been arranged to allow people to have a say on financial proposals that the park’s current owners Suffolk County Council (SCC) has put to Clare Town Council (CTC), which is keen to take the park over.
Clare Town Council chairman, Keith Haisman, said: “It’s nota decision making forum, it’s more giving us the chance to tell the whole community what’s going on.”
The proposals include reinstating the station master’s house to its original structure, on two floors and separated from the waiting room, ticket office and office, which would become a history and education centre.
Clare Park Centre, currently a visitor centre, would be hired out to local groups, with the town’s youth largely being given priority, and maintained by CTC.
The waiting room on the platform opposite the house would become studios for artists to rent, with their work going on display, while the toilet block would remain available for public use.
The park centre and waiting room require a lot of improvements and repair to make them financially viable in the future, and SCC has made a final offer to CTC, which will enable it to commission the required work.
The county council, which will cover the costs of legal and professional fees relating to the park’s transfer, has agreed to do some of the repairs before the site is transferred.
St Edmundsbury Council currently manages all the green spaces for the county council, keeping the income from the car park in return.
The town council wants to continue the same arrangement with the borough council once it takes over the park’s management, at least for the first year.
Once the new management set up is agreed, the land and buildings will transfer to the ownership of the town council, which will become the custodian trustee.
A charitable company limited by guarantee will be formed to manage the park and CTC will enter in to a long term management agreement with the company, which in turn will give the trustees the powers to run the park independently of the town council.
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Weather for Haverhill
Friday 24 May 2013
Temperature: 4 C to 8 C
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