25th Sep, 2017

Town council wants to work alongside district council to cement the Malvern TIC's future

Craig Gibbons 11th Aug, 2017

MALVERN Town Council says it wants to ‘work alongside’ and ‘in partnership’ with the district council to decide on the future of the tourist information centre.

That was the decision made at a behind closed doors extra ordinary general meeting at the town council on Wednesday night.

Press and the public can be excluded from such meetings if ‘publicity would be prejudicial to the public interest by reason of the confidential nature of the business to be transacted’.

Further details of what the authority plans to do regarding the TIC remain a secret for now.

Town clerk Linda Blake told the Observer: “Unfortunately the full details of last night’s town council meeting cannot yet be released to the public due to their content and this will be done in due course.

“However the meeting contained a very positive discussion and Malvern Town Council has agreed that it wishes to work alongside and in partnership with Malvern Hills District Council to find a way of retaining the tourist information function within the town centre.”

The long-running saga over the move of the TIC began at the start of the year when the district council revealed it wanted to move the Church Street service into a new £950,000 community centre on Avenue Road.

John Dixon, vice-chairman of the town’s civic society, had slammed the proposals, saying that moving the TIC would ‘rip the heart’ out of Malvern and would have an adverse affect on tourism in the area.

Rodney Randle, owner of Malvern Goldsmiths on Bellevue Terrace, had become so concerned he launched a petition which to date has received more than 2,500 signatures.

Officials at the town council even set up their own petition which had been backed by over 600 worried residents.

Then in May, plans to move the TIC stalled after the district council found out Priory Lodge had been made a listed building.

Priory Lodge, which was built in 1919 as a school gymnasium, was listed as a Grade II building by Historic England on Tuesday, January 24 – not long before the district council revealed its proposals for demolishing that building.

Coun David Chambers, leader of the district council, said at the time of the revelation that the authority would find other options to see how the site could be progressed.

 

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