Tonge Hall to be sold for £1
Date published: 13 September 2010
Tonge Hall in Middleton is to be sold for just £1 under Council plans for the acquisition, restoration and disposal of the grade II listed building.
Tonge Hall was badly burnt in 2007 and lay derelict until the Council secured grant aid of £208,000 from English Heritage.
The Council has sought to find a long term owner for the building. They have now identified the North West Building Preservation Trust as the preferred, ultimate owner, most likely through its wholly owned subsidiary, the Greater Manchester Preservation Trust.
The Trust is willing to take on the building; it is a registered charity and has extensive relevant experience owning 33 historic buildings already.
The report to the Council Cabinet reads: “It is proposed to dispose of the building for £1 subject to a number of conditions in particular a requirement to make the building available for community use and public viewing. It should be noted that ultimate ownership by the Greater Manchester Building Preservation Trust will bring a strong degree of local control over Tonge Hall.
“The Trust will be based in Middleton in the Long Street Methodist Church and two of the Trustees have strong local connections. These are John Pierce and Councillor Dale
The report states that now the recommendations have got the go ahead, full control over the building will be secured as soon as possible.
“This will allow the remaining resources to be committed. These will not complete the restoration but will ensure the building is fully protected. To ensure these works take place to a satisfactory standard it is proposed that the Council lets the Contract. It is proposed to use the contracting arm of GMBPT to undertake the works. This organisation has the specialist expertise needed to undertake the works.
“Once the works have been completed to the satisfaction of the Council and English Heritage (it is a condition of the grant that the Council controls the works) the building will be transferred to the NWBPT.
“NWBPT will then pursue the remaining resources needed to complete the works. The most likely source will be Heritage Lottery Memorial Fund but other possibilities exist. A loan of £120,000 from the Architectural Heritage Fund has already been secured. The Council would support NWBPT in applying for funding.”
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