Hough End Hall has a new owner

Yes, at last the Hall has a new owner, a local group that is keen for the Hall to be of use to the local community.   We have met them briefly and will be discussing further what possibilities there might be.  They have only just taken possession and are concentrating on immediate repair work before it can be used.  We remain optimistic that the Hall will be accessible for community groups.

They have asked us to share the following announcement:

“The building is now owned by a local charity and will be called ‘Hough End Hall Academy’. It will be used for educational purposes. The Academy will be responsible for preserving, protecting, and restoring the building and its rich history. Hough End Hall Academy are making their official website and request the community to use it for future information and suggestions. In the meanwhile, suggestions are welcome and can be given in the Suggestion Box that will be arranged to be placed outside the building. The Academy is preparing the building and will invite the community as soon as the building is in a presentable condition.

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you need any further information.”

 

We will provide more information here as soon as we have it.

A packed meeting about the Hall

Yesterday, Saturday 28 March, we held a public meeting to update our supporters on the progress made by the campaign and the current position.  Some 40 people attended the meeting in the community room at Chorlton Library.IMG_20150328_143340

Carolyn Kagan, secretary of the Friends of Hough End Hall gives the latest news.

Here is a summary of what we said.

Progress of the Sale of the Hall

The Friends of Hough End Hall had to withdraw from the bidding process after being unsuccessful in the bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund. RBS, the Hall’s owner, then set a deadline for bids from other interested parties to be submitted.

Not long before the deadline we were contacted by an agent for a charitable foundation endowed by a prominent and well respected entrepreneur who wanted to submit a bid for the Hall, incorporating the community interests and working with the Friends of Hough End Hall.

We were obviously delighted with this and after some discussions and meetings agreed to be a part of this bid, which was duly submitted. Full details of how any partnership arrangements would work are still to be worked out but we can assure you we are approaching this with careful risk analyses – particularly as far as any financial commitments might be concerned!

RBS received and reviewed all the bids and decided in January to work with three bidders (of which ‘our’ charitable foundation was one) as they refined their bids, clarifying any conditions they had put alongside their offers.

The last we heard (just before our public meeting on March 28th) was that RBS was commissioning a full condition survey with any associated specialist surveys needed (such as timber surveys) to give to the prospective bidders, to help speed up the process.

For us, this is a little frustrating as we had reached this point last August, by which time we had already got a condition survey completed and had professional costings of the repairs and restoration needed for the Hall. Had RBS agreed to work with us without the messiness of other bidders, we could have been a lot further forward by now!

So… we still do not know what role we will have in the event of the Hall eventually being sold. We hope the charitable foundation will be successful and that we will be able to form a constrictive partnership for the future and ensure the Hall is made available for local people.

Read more in our Bulletin no. 10,  March 2015

There was a lot of interest at the meeting with people (including local politicians) keen that the Hall really does become an asset for all the community while preserving its heritage value.

The meeting also heard from Andrew Simpson and Peter Topping about the book they plan to publish in May.  It will be a history of the Hall, focussing not just on the wealthy people who built and owned the Hall, but also on the many people who have been part of its local community.

Thanks to everyone who turned out, giving us such a great show of community support for the efforts of the Friends of Hough End Hall.  Whatever happens with the sale of the Hall we will continue to work towards its preservation as a heritage and community asset.

Hough End Hall Family Fun Day – Let’s Make it Ours! 21st Sept.

IMPORTANT UPDATE

We have had to cancel the fun day until the Spring.  –  Thanks for your interest and we’ll see you then.

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Hough End Hall Family Fun Day – Let’s Make it Ours!

How about putting it in your diary now?

Chorlton Park, 21st September, 2014, from 12 to 5.

 

Our new video about Hough End Hall and the campaign

Hough End Hall, Chorlton-cum-Hardy – Let’s make it ours!

This video gives you a general explanation of this project to bring Hough End Hall under comunity ownership and management as a resource for the people of Chorlton and South Manchester.  To donate to the project click this link. Our crowdfunding call will follow soon.

Published on 10 Jul 2014

The Friends of Hough End Hall, Chorlton-cum-Hardy are seeking to raise money to the tune of about £300,000 so that they can buy the Grade 2* listed Hough End Hall for the use of the South Manchester community.
In the film, Peter Topping, Carolyn Kagan and Andrew Simpson all talk about the hall, what it has been in the past and what it is hoped it will become in the future, as a place to meet, a place to eat, for art and education and as a social and recreational centre.
Friends of Hough End Hall is a not for profit company registration no 9096872.
Paintings and music by Peter Topping.
Film sponsored by Hardy Productions UK, filmed and presented in 4K (3840×2160 pixels).

To donate to the project click this link. Our crowdfunding call will follow soon.