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New look for north Suffolk town hall in bid to attract more users

17:32 28 February 2014

Eye Town Hall.
Photo: Denise Bradley
Copy: Matt Sparkes
For: EDP2
©Archant Photographic 2009
01603 772434

Eye Town Hall. Photo: Denise Bradley Copy: Matt Sparkes For: EDP2 ©Archant Photographic 2009 01603 772434

©Archant Photographic 2009

A historic north Suffolk town hall has been given a new look to try and make it more appealing to groups and organisations.

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The restoration work to Eye Town Hall was completed during the second week of February and included the installation of gas central heating as well as a redecoration, with the hall returning to its original period colours.

Town clerk Roz Barnett said the aim of the refurbishment was to create a vibrant civic and community centre available for use by theatre companies such as Eastern Angles, along with other societies.

She added: “We would really like to see greater use being made of it now we have got spaces for regular users during the week. It is a lovely venue for functions. We have had it rewired and redecorated and it is now in period colours because it is an old building.”

The hall’s bar has also been retiled, with new lights installed, though the clerk said that currently the focus was more on attracting groups and societies rather than private functions and parties, owing to difficulties with obtaining an alcohol licence.

Suffolk police and neighbours living close to the grade II listed hall raised concerns that there would be a significant increase in public disorder if the Victorian hall was granted a licence.

The licence was approved by Mid Suffolk District Council in August, though with very strident conditions and a designated supervisor was set to be tasked with controlling the alcohol supply. The town hall was completed in 1857 and designed by Edward Buckton Lamb. It is home to Eye Town Council and the award-winning country market.

Can more be done with our historic buildings? Email dominic.bareham2@archant.co.uk

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