May 22 2013 Latest news:
By Kate Scotter
Monday, March 4, 2013
Scores of people took the opportunity to have their say on the future use of a building which has had a long history in their village.
Over the years, Stradbroke Court House has been a corn exchange, a court house, a dance venue, a youth club and has been home to the village library for a number of years.
Parts of the Suffolk County Council-owned building, however, have been out of use for a couple of years and are in need of a revamp.
Now, the Stradbroke Court House Development Group is looking to bring all the rooms into reuse.
The group hosted a consultation event on Saturday, asking members of the community to give their views on how they would like the building to be used.
Ideas already mooted include hosting a café in the building, having a computer centre and using the building as a hub for the village’s own radio station.
James Hargrave, vice-chairman of the development group, said: “This is a great space right in the middle of the village and we’ve got a brilliant opportunity to turn this into something.
“We want to know what people want to use it for. We’ve got some ideas ourselves but other people have got ideas we haven’t thought of before and we want to hear them.”
Suffolk County Council is handing over the running of the building to people in the village with the understanding that it will continue to provide the library service.
Under the plans, it is hoped to expand the library, which is to be run by the Industrial and Provident Society (IPS), a charity set up to run the library service as the county council tries to make savings.
Villager Margaret Streeter said: “I would like to see it used as somewhere the village archive could be kept. It would be nice to use it as a coffee shop as well.”
Karen Stannard, 51, who lives in the village, added: “I think it will be a real asset to the village and can be used for lots of different things for different people.”
It is hoped the building will be back into full use just after Easter.
Guy McGregor, county councillor for the village, said: “This is a tremendously exciting project and has brought the village together.”
Police in Norwich have launched an investigation after a woman claimed in a tweet she had knocked a cyclist off their bike.
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