Guildhall sale proposed

Salisbury Journal: Guildhall sale proposed Guildhall sale proposed

SELLING Salisbury’s historic Guildhall is one of the ideas being circulated in the city in order to keep down council tax.

In an email to the council leader and group leaders, Cllr James Robertson said: “You asked for budgetary suggestions and here they are: One: put the Guildhall on the market, but after enquiring about office space at Bourne Hill.”

He says the £67,000 that will have to be spent over each of the next ten to 15 years to repair the Guildhall roof could be saved by finding an alternative site for council business and putting the £5m Grade-II listed Guildhall on the market.

His email says the anticipated £161,000 shortfall in the city council’s income from April could be made up by not spending money on the Guildhall roof and other small projects and by delaying works to improve Victoria Park.

Council taxpayers could then be warned about future precept increases. He adds: “I do not think it is reasonable to pass the nastiness of a raise without warning people.”

On Monday, the city council will consider a plan to increase council tax from April by nearly 14 per cent, bringing the city band D property precept up to £102.50 from the current £90.

When contacted by the Journal, Cllr Roberston said he had suggested selling The Guildhall in order “to concentrate minds” as he was very much against an increase in the council tax.

He said: “If we can buy time this year we help residents and help the budgeting process for next year. “If we are going to spend £800,000 on the roof we should embrace a whole range of possibilities before we commit to it. We need to put residents first.”

He said all the indications were that poverty was on the increase in Salisbury and although he wanted to keep The Guildhall, which dates from 1795, he said it might make sense for city council staff to share accommodation with Wiltshire Council staff in Bourne Hill.

Cllr Robertson’s idea was heavily criticised by fellow councillor Matthew Dean, who said it was a non-starter. He said: “What an outrageous policy suggestion. “This is a fire sale of assets for the short-term. You can imagine the public reaction. Who would buy it? You cannot turn it into flats.” He said the city council would only receive half its value if sold, because the other half would have to go to Wiltshire Council. “This is an idea that has not been thought through,” he added.

He said the building was profitable as a conference centre and wedding venue and was a city asset.

Comments (17)

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2:47pm Wed 15 Jan 14

journalist1 says...

They'd have to fight with the police force for space at Bourne Hill from what I hear!
They'd have to fight with the police force for space at Bourne Hill from what I hear! journalist1

5:52pm Wed 15 Jan 14

gingin says...

What a ridiculous idea from a ridiculous man! The Guildhall is a city asset and to even think of selling should be a non starter. I cannot comment further otherwise I shall be so rude the comment would be wiped!
What a ridiculous idea from a ridiculous man! The Guildhall is a city asset and to even think of selling should be a non starter. I cannot comment further otherwise I shall be so rude the comment would be wiped! gingin

6:07pm Wed 15 Jan 14

IanMcL says...

wetherspoons?


Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaar
gh!
wetherspoons? Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaar gh! IanMcL

6:31pm Wed 15 Jan 14

cactus Joe says...

It would be very disapointing to see it sold :-(
It would be very disapointing to see it sold :-( cactus Joe

6:44pm Wed 15 Jan 14

karlmarx says...

It's like living in a final clearance sale:

Police station

Bus station

Guildhall

The ground beneath our feet (fracking)

What next?
It's like living in a final clearance sale: Police station Bus station Guildhall The ground beneath our feet (fracking) What next? karlmarx

7:38pm Wed 15 Jan 14

hillyanne says...

Clr McL may be on to something. Andover Guildhall's ground floor is a very nice,upmarket Italian restaurant. ASK in York is in a wonderful,erstwhile civic building.Think on't!
Clr McL may be on to something. Andover Guildhall's ground floor is a very nice,upmarket Italian restaurant. ASK in York is in a wonderful,erstwhile civic building.Think on't! hillyanne

7:39pm Wed 15 Jan 14

Schoolmum999 says...

Is this not just selling the family silver?
Is this not just selling the family silver? Schoolmum999

7:55pm Wed 15 Jan 14

minkleberry says...

Seems like an ideal spot for a new charity shop, with perhaps a coffee shop downstairs. Maybe Tesco would buy it and submit plans to knock it down and build a hotel? Salisbury is being treated like a Monopoly board at the moment and unfortunately everybody is losing. This is the latest in a long line of ridiculous suggestions for the centre. Maybe it was said tongue in cheek, but when in a position of authority and trust should the comment have been made at all.
Seems like an ideal spot for a new charity shop, with perhaps a coffee shop downstairs. Maybe Tesco would buy it and submit plans to knock it down and build a hotel? Salisbury is being treated like a Monopoly board at the moment and unfortunately everybody is losing. This is the latest in a long line of ridiculous suggestions for the centre. Maybe it was said tongue in cheek, but when in a position of authority and trust should the comment have been made at all. minkleberry

9:17pm Wed 15 Jan 14

gingin says...

karlmarx wrote:
It's like living in a final clearance sale:

Police station

Bus station

Guildhall

The ground beneath our feet (fracking)

What next?
Don't even think about "Fracking" Karl. Much more evidence of safety and effects on the area where it's taking place is needed. Although if there is money to be had for the council Wiltshire Council will probably find some excuse for it to happen against people's wishes.

Don't forget "we are all in this together" !!!
[quote][p][bold]karlmarx[/bold] wrote: It's like living in a final clearance sale: Police station Bus station Guildhall The ground beneath our feet (fracking) What next?[/p][/quote]Don't even think about "Fracking" Karl. Much more evidence of safety and effects on the area where it's taking place is needed. Although if there is money to be had for the council Wiltshire Council will probably find some excuse for it to happen against people's wishes. Don't forget "we are all in this together" !!! gingin

12:45pm Thu 16 Jan 14

Spireman says...

karlmarx wrote:
It's like living in a final clearance sale: Police station Bus station Guildhall The ground beneath our feet (fracking) What next?
Don't forget...

Hillcote

The YHA Hostel.

Our City really is on Skid Row.

Never mind, we will soon have another nice new council building, the "Campus" at Five Rivers.
[quote][p][bold]karlmarx[/bold] wrote: It's like living in a final clearance sale: Police station Bus station Guildhall The ground beneath our feet (fracking) What next?[/p][/quote]Don't forget... Hillcote The YHA Hostel. Our City really is on Skid Row. Never mind, we will soon have another nice new council building, the "Campus" at Five Rivers. Spireman

5:23pm Thu 16 Jan 14

rattajack says...

Why not suggest selling Salisbury Cathedral to the Americans, and give them Stonehenge on a buy one get one free. If the people running Wiltshire carry on like this much longer Wiltshire will not need these structures.
If memory serves me well, the PEOPLE of Wiltshire were conned into the Bourne Hill building as it was pushed through on the quick in the end.
Council bosses have just given themselves some nice wage rises, (one giving herself £170,00 per annum for 1 extra duty).
I joked with family about 10yrs ago that Salisbury as a beautiful place for tourist was in decline. I cannot now afford to Park in town so go elsewhere to do my shopping and have a day out.
As a resident I am saddened that anyone could even suggest selling this building.
Why not suggest selling Salisbury Cathedral to the Americans, and give them Stonehenge on a buy one get one free. If the people running Wiltshire carry on like this much longer Wiltshire will not need these structures. If memory serves me well, the PEOPLE of Wiltshire were conned into the Bourne Hill building as it was pushed through on the quick in the end. Council bosses have just given themselves some nice wage rises, (one giving herself £170,00 per annum for 1 extra duty). I joked with family about 10yrs ago that Salisbury as a beautiful place for tourist was in decline. I cannot now afford to Park in town so go elsewhere to do my shopping and have a day out. As a resident I am saddened that anyone could even suggest selling this building. rattajack

9:46pm Thu 16 Jan 14

Grampie says...

It would be an ideal place for a custody suite-Central, nice food next door, buses parked in the road nearby so that the miscreants don't have far to get transport home. The Police would save on transport costs.

Hang on! Didn't they have cells in there many years ago?

That was probably in the days when the powers that be thought ahead and thought locally instead of where the next Police medal was going.
It would be an ideal place for a custody suite-Central, nice food next door, buses parked in the road nearby so that the miscreants don't have far to get transport home. The Police would save on transport costs. Hang on! Didn't they have cells in there many years ago? That was probably in the days when the powers that be thought ahead and thought locally instead of where the next Police medal was going. Grampie

9:48pm Thu 16 Jan 14

Grampie says...

When the bid went in to re do the market square, didn't anybody think about future repairs to the Guildhall or was making the square looking nice a higher priority that maintaining a historical building?
When the bid went in to re do the market square, didn't anybody think about future repairs to the Guildhall or was making the square looking nice a higher priority that maintaining a historical building? Grampie

6:19pm Fri 17 Jan 14

Petera says...

karlmarx wrote:
It's like living in a final clearance sale:

Police station

Bus station

Guildhall

The ground beneath our feet (fracking)

What next?
If they sell of anymore assets perhaps we should be downgraded to a town. No bus station, soon no police station. This "city" is rapidly becoming a bad joke.
[quote][p][bold]karlmarx[/bold] wrote: It's like living in a final clearance sale: Police station Bus station Guildhall The ground beneath our feet (fracking) What next?[/p][/quote]If they sell of anymore assets perhaps we should be downgraded to a town. No bus station, soon no police station. This "city" is rapidly becoming a bad joke. Petera

6:33pm Fri 17 Jan 14

Morello says...

Googled "The Old Guildhall"

Given me a few ideas.

Who's the estate agent ?
Googled "The Old Guildhall" Given me a few ideas. Who's the estate agent ? Morello

3:32am Sun 19 Jan 14

karlmarx says...

Can the last person to leave Salisbury please switch off the lights.
Can the last person to leave Salisbury please switch off the lights. karlmarx

5:48am Thu 30 Jan 14

IanMcL says...

"Can the last person to leave Salisbury please switch off the lights."

I think they were removed after Christmas.

The City has already been downgraded to a parish.
"Can the last person to leave Salisbury please switch off the lights." I think they were removed after Christmas. The City has already been downgraded to a parish. IanMcL

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