It’s official: hall will get revamp

Market Rasen Festival Hall EMN-151218-081750001
Market Rasen Festival Hall EMN-151218-081750001
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Market Rasen Town Council has announced it is now ‘committed’ to a major refurbishment at Festival Hall - and is employing a specialist to take the project forward.

It comes after business associate Nicola Marshall submitted a ‘feasibility study final report’ to the council, which highlighted a need for significant investment in the hall.

Councillors have met to discuss the report and agree now is the right time to ‘commit to the development of the building’.

The council is already in the process of employing a member of staff to work on the project for 16 hours a week, over three days.

This will be funded through rent for the Old Police Station and mast, Festival Hall income and reserves.

The community hall, built in 1972, needs extensive work, including a new weather-proof roof, which is estimated to cost £100,000 
alone.

The council plans to apply for funding to turn the hall into a vibrant venue that hosts a range of cultural events.

Ms Marshall’s report stated: “Significant areas of work and investment are required to bring the Festival Hall into a profitable, fit-for-the-future venue.

“Structural surveys show that major renovation work and a comprehensive modernization programme are required; failing this the building will continue to deteriorate and incur costly repairs and maintenance.

“The Festival Hall is not a profitable concern at 
present.

“There is strong support from the local community and existing hirers of the venue to see the Festival Hall retained and developed as a modern, attractive community building for the town.

“The community and hirers value the Festival Hall’s space and location but would like to see the fabric of the building improved internally and externally and for it to have a generally more welcoming ambiance.

“The community’s response to the proposed plans was positive,but there was also a view that a new build may be a better option.”

In a special event at Festival Hall on October 15, residents were able to cast their eyes over designers’ plans for a new-look community hall - and feedback was largely positive.

Designer Ian Hind told the Rasen Mail he wanted to make the building look more welcoming and modern and give it more uses.

Before the council can apply for funding for a refurbishment it must demonstrate how desperately residents need the 
facility.

Ms Marshall said various events will be put on over the coming months.