Rushcliffe Borough Council is set to sign a lease with a Community Group to operate and manage Lutterell Hall.
The currently unnamed Community Group plan to take over the running of the Hall from April 2021, with Rushcliffe (RBC) continuing to own and be responsible for the Hall maintenance.
Since the announcement, in June 2019, that the Council was looking for expressions of interest in acquiring or managing the Hall, the future of the Hall, as a valued community asset, has been uncertain.
FoLH formed in Sept. 2019 with the aim of protecting the building and ensuring that it remained a place of education, recreation and enjoyment for the long-term benefit of the local community. Our first AGM was attended by over 60 residents and Hall users.
After a campaign spearheaded by FoLH, Lutterell Hall was granted a Grade 2 listing in January. The Hall, built in 1929, is now protected from demolition and must be maintained in line with the requirements of Historic England to preserve this architectural gem for future generations. Subsequently, FoLH have had numerous meetings with the Council to discuss how best to keep the Hall as a community resource.
In March 2020, RBC published an internal report that compared the option of the Council retaining the ownership and management with the option of leasing the Hall to a community organisation. Both options received almost identical scores, the difference was due to “previous attempts (by the Council) to market the Hall having minimal impact on increasing diversity of usage”. RBC made the decision to pursue 3 expressions of interest from community groups and hoped to sign a lease with a consortium of the same.
In September, RBC confirmed that they were now looking to engage in a lease with just 1 group, the previously mentioned Community Group.
In November, following concerns raised by FoLH regarding ensuring that the Hall remained a place that welcomed everyone, the Chief Executive of RBC confirmed that the Council’s own Equality and Diversity policy would form part of the contract with the Community Group.
Going forward, FoLH will discuss with RBC the most appropriate way to manage the Hall that ensures that the views and opinions of local residents, users and Councillors are heard and discussed.
FoLH have also contacted the Community Group and, if they take on the lease, look forward to working with them to ensure that Lutterell Hall remains a valued resource for current users and the wider community.