Time for list of key buildings
Move would help avoid demolition
BUILDINGS important to the community should be identified to protect them from demolition, according to councillors.
Beaconsfield Town Council community safety committee talked about identifying community assets in the town, prompted by the right to bid under the Localism Bill on Thursday last week.
The idea is to see which buildings are key to the town and put them on a list, so if they are to be sold, community groups have the right to bid if they so choose.
Chairman John Read said: “This was triggered by the Localism Act and conversations around Wilton Park.
“We need to take a step back and look around the town at the community assets we already have.
“One of the rights enshrined in the act is the community right to bid, it means you are notified when the property is put on the market and are allowed to bid.
“It doesn’t mean you have to but the chance is there.”
The town council said it is unlikely it would ever be in a position to bid for sites such as the Curzon Cenre in Maxwell Road and the Royal British Legion in Candlemas Lane.
But it did mean it could support a community group if it wished. The Royal British Legion was highlighted because the club, but not the branch, is closing this month.
Neighbours have raised concerns the site may be taken over by a developer.
Leader of the town council Alan Walters said: “The reason why it is good to do this is because of buildings like [the Royal British Legion] and the Curzon Centre, which county cut funding for.
“The point is they are very good community assets and this will mean that’s highlighted.
“That’s all. We then have a right, rather than not being told at all.
“People living by the Royal British Legion building are worried and wondering what will happen. I think that is a key site.”
However, Councillor Richard Keith said: “It will presumably be sold at market value. I think it’d be horribly expensive. You’d just be giving people false hope.”