Station not an ‘asset’ as bid is turned down

Market Rasen's station buildings
Market Rasen's station buildings

Plans to get Market Rasen’s station building listed as a community asset have been thwarted after campaigners were told it did not qualify.

The Community Right to Bid application was made by Market Rasen Vision Group, after a public meeting had shown support for the site to be ‘saved’ for community use.

Had the property been listed, it would have given the group six months to find the funding to purchase the five room building, for sale at offers in excess of £50,000, ahead of the open market. As it is, the building could be sold privately at any time.

“We received a nomination for the Market Rasen Station building to be listed but, on examination, it did not meet the criteria around previous or current community use and, as such, we were unable to list it,” said Coun Malcolm Parish, chair of WLDC’s prosperous communities committee.

But the Vision Group’s independent chairman Ivan Annibal is optimistic a community-led solution could still be found and believes that is the best sustainable way forward for the buildings.

“The railway station buildings are an asset of potentially huge benefit to the community, even if it has been decided they are not technically an asset of community value as defined in the Localism Act,” he told the Market Rasen Mail.

“The decision not to list them is not a set back; the whole process was an opportunity to raise the profile of what might be achieved with this site, but it is unwise to see their future as totally separate from the future of the railway station itself, one of the defining assets of Market Rasen.

“I still hope the owners might be prepared to sit down with the community in the town and consider how we could work together to link the redevelopment of these buildings to the other key assets in the town such as the Old Police Station and the Goldmine. I want us to avoid the danger of seeing every site and project in the town in isolation and not deriving any benefit from working together to get the most of the scarce resources.”