Between September 7 and 13, Batchworth Community Council (BCC) held a consultation with Rickmansworth residents on the new community hall it plans to acquire.
Since BCC was created in 2017, the council has sought a suitable venue to house its leisure and wellbeing services, as well as providing office space for councillors. Now, says BCC, a “rare opportunity” has arisen to secure such a venue.
In order to ascertain residents’ ideas and concerns, BCC held a week-long online consultation. The council received “a substantial number of questions regarding the proposed hall purchase”, the answers to which it plans to publish shortly.
To secure the new community hall, BCC will use some of its existing funds and also take out a loan not to exceed £450,000 from the central government. The loan will be repaid over 35 years, costing BCC £29,785 per annum. Annual running costs estimated at £18,500 will bring annual cost to BCC up to £48,285.
To finance the new centre, Band A properties will be charged £3.13 per annum, Band D properties £4.70 and Band H properties £9.39. An additional £2 to £3 will be charged for running costs each year.
However, it is likely (although not guaranteed) that Rickmansworth residents would see an overall decrease in tax, because Watersmeet, run by Three Rivers District Council, would cease to act as the community hall. Currently, BCC residents pay a collective total of £68,636 every year to finance Watersmeet.
More information is available at www.batchworth-ecc.gov.uk/bcc-resident-consultation/ and a Q&A based on the residents’ consultation will also soon be uploaded to the BCC website.