Concerns raised over cost fo Kings Head Meadow plans for Wymondham

Kings Head Meadow where Wymondham Town play football

Kings Head Meadow where Wymondham Town play football - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2011

Concerns have been raised over the likely cost of a major project to improve a Norfolk town's recreation area after a council's working party was unable to provide detailed information on how much money would need to be spent at a meeting tonight.

Wymondham Town Council's Kings Head Meadow working party had pledged at a public meeting in mid-March, where plans for a new community building on the meadow were unveiled, that they would provide detailed costings for the scheme in time for the meeting.

However, the members of the working party were unable to provide the information last night, prompting concerns from residents at the meeting, including Derek Ward, a member of the Wymondham Asks Why action group, who warned that the public would want to know the cost of the project, 'bearing in mind councils across the country are strapped for cash.'

However, councillor Mike Gibbins said the costs could not be made public until architects had advised the working group of the exact cost of the plans, which include demolishing the existing football clubhouse and replacing it with a modern, two-storey community building.

To that end, the meeting heard councillor Colin Foulger, a member of the working party, had identified five architects for the council's clerk Trevor Gurney to write to inviting them to submit a design for the new clubhouse.

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These five will then be reduced to three from which the council will choose its preferred architect.

Councillor Andy Gardiner, the working party chairman, said the exact costs would be presented at a council meeting in June and said the architect's applications would be determined on a number of criteria, including their previous competence and whether they had developed similar buildings in the past.

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He also revealed the town council could be able to provide £50,000 towards plans to extend the children's play area at the meadow from Ogden Court to the Orchard Way footpath, while Cllr Foulger had also begun discussions with South Norfolk Council about acquiring that council's part of the meadow site for the play area.

The planned clubhouse will boast a bar and function facility, with an outdoor area where parents can watch their children playing on the park's play equipment and the premises could also provide a new office for the town council, which is looking to relocate.

Cllr Gardiner added: 'It is the working group's absolute intention that this project is delivered to the people of Wymondham by April 2015.'

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