Saturday, December 03, 2005

Woodbank Hall - Stockport Times

Woodbank HallWoodbank Hall apartments
You heard it here first, that SMBC is thinking of disposing of Woodbank Hall. Now Stockport Times also has the news. A council spokesperson said, "The hall is costly to maintain at public expense, and not very suitable for accomodating staff, but we do not want to see it boarded up. No decision has yet been taken over the future use of the hall. It is not yet for sale but could well be in the future." Any capital raised from the sale would be reinvested in the park.
The Trust has already written to the Charities Commission to ask what protection they can give to this Grade II listed building which was gifted to Stopfordians in 1921 by Sir Thomas Rowbotham JP as a memorial to the men of Stockport who lost their lives in WWI. SMBC intend to sell a long term lease which would presumably circumvent the conditions of the gift.
Entrance to Woodbank ParkI have difficulty believing that anyone will be interest. It's a long way from the road. Residents will need a car just to get to Turncroft Lane, but on the other hand it can hardly be described solitary sitting as it does in the middle of a public park. Will buyers be warned of the ghost?
The Trust doesn't object to the sale on principal, so long as the internal and external character is preserved.
Previous postings
Reply from Charity Commission - 24/10/05.
Disposal of Woodbank Hall - 8/10/05