THE fate of a hall in a Hadleigh park remains in doubt after it was revealed £400,000 would be needed to get it back into shape.
Castle Point Council is now mulling over the future of Hadleigh Hall, in JohnHBurrows recreation ground, in Rectory Road.
It would cost an estimated £401,600 to carry out essential repairs – and a total of £770,500 to turn it into a modern, accessible centre.
It would cost £86,700 to demolish the building and reinstate the area with grass, and £98,000 to replace it with tarmac.
Alf Papworth, who leads the Solby Estate and Hadleigh Residents’ Association, believes the hall must be saved – at any cost.
Mr Papworth, 80, of Ashdown Crescent, said: “The hall is very important and it needs to stay there and be refurbished. It was used for leisure activities for years.
“We are going to see if we can get funding in the hope we can keep it going. None of the residents in the surrounding area wants to see it go.
“It would be great if it could be used as a sports hall or provide leisure facilities again. But we need to get in touch with people to make donations to save the hall, because it is worth saving.”
The latest quotes were revealed in a council report after a survey on the building by property design and management services company, NPS. The hall, which has fallen into disrepair, has remained empty for two years and proposals to tear it down come as part of Castle Point’s regeneration partnership’s £3million plan to remodel the park. Council leader Colin Riley, the Tory representative for Victoria ward, said he would rather the hall was saved.
He said: “I would love for the hall to remain as a leisure facility like a sports hall. But to demolish the hall is the alternative.
“That is why we want to make sure that before we decide to do anything we make the right decision by consulting all members and the public.”
The figures have emerged after a public outcry led to the council pulling out of talks with brewery chain Greene King over a plan to allow a Hungry Horse pub on the site.
The hall’s future is due to be discussed at a council cabinet meeting next week.