Closure date set for Hitchin’s Bancroft Hall ahead of demolition
- Credit: Archant
A date has been set for closure of a Hitchin community centre – almost five years after plans for its demolition were approved.
Bancroft Hall – which is located in Bancroft Recreation Ground – will close its doors for the final time on September 30, North Herts District Council has announced today.
Contractors will then dismantle the building and once the debris has been cleared the land that it stood on will be turned back into landscaped parkland.
The plans to demolish the building were first approved as part of the district council’s Community Halls Strategy in October 2011, after it was established that the building had fallen into disrepair and would be too expensive for it to be sustainable in the long term.
At a meeting in July last year it was expected that the facility would be demolished before the end of 2015, but its demolition has been dependent on the opening of the much maligned Hitchin Town Hall project, as well as Bancroft Splash Park.
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Councillor Tony Hunter, the council’s executive member for community engagement, said: “We have been working with regular users of the community centre since 2011 to find alternative venues to hold activities and group meetings.
“Bancroft Hall has just naturally come to the end of its ‘shelf life’. Even though it was extremely cheap to hire due to the age and condition of the building, it was starting to look a little out of place in the park, particularly since the removal of the tennis courts.
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“Additional community hall space has been created with the opening of Hitchin Town Hall which has rooms available for hire by users and community groups and we look forward to utilising the additional park space that will be created by the removal of the hall.”