Community Asset Transfer Meeting with Milton Keynes Council Officers Regarding the Great Holm Community Centre

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A Community Asset Transfer meeting was held by Milton Keynes Council Officers Neil Handley Community Solutions Programme Manager and Paul Davey Community Solutions Project Manager on Monday 11th February 2013 at the Two Mile Ash Meeting Place regarding the Great Holm Community Centre.

In attendance from Loughton Parish Council were the Parish Clerk Brian Barton along with Cllrs Peter Ballantyne and Hilary Dyer.

Also in attendance were representatives of the Great Holm Community Centre Management Committee.

The Lead Officers from Milton Keynes Council made a background presentation and there then followed questions.

Representatives of the Management Committee were concerned whoever were the eventual landlords would increase the rent to groups already using the community centre, Milton Keynes Council Officers were at pains to reassure them that the present terms of conditions would have to be continued and the new landlords would have to give any group at least eighteen (18) months notice to quit or change any terms of conditions.

Any application would have to show that any potential landlord has consulted with the Management Committee and that both parties are happy that either or will make an application.

The Management Committee were concerned that if the Parish Council were to become the landlords that they would run the community centre as an additional income stream, both Cllrs Ballantyne and Dyer were at pains to say although they cannot speak for the Parish Council, they were confident that it would be run as an asset for the benefit of the community.

The Milton Keynes Officers asked if the Parish Council were interested in becoming the landlords, and Cllrs Ballantyne and Dyer responded that the Parish Council will be discussing this matter at its next meeting.

The Officers also advised that both the Management Committee and the Parish Council should start to speak to each other, and will for the time being will not put the community centre in the next tranche until they hear from both parties.

Also to note the Officers produced a site plan and Cllr Dyer and the Management Committee felt that it was incorrect as it included the play area next to the building and the Management Committee felt their responsibility only covered up to the fence next to the play area, the Officers said they were thankful and will query this with their property department.

The Management Committee left feeling relived that they will have a say who their landlords will be and that the building will not be sold off or closed down by Milton Keynes Council if a Landlord was not found.

Loughton Parish Council will be starting discussions soon with the Management Committee and will keep residents abreast of any future developments.

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