Old Town Hall buyer is ‘Sheffield based and loves restoring’
The Old Town Hall has reportedly been bought by a local who “loves the building” and “loves restoring”, according to councillor Mazher Iqbal.
Speaking to BBC Radio Sheffield, the council’s cabinet member for business and investment said Sheffield city council were considering applying for a court order to force the former owners G1 London Properties to make urgent repairs to the Grade II-listed building. “At the 13th hour somebody’s come in, bought the place and has a really good vision to redevelop it.
“It will be keeping its heritage as well, and for me, that’s another plus for Castlegate. We’ve got somebody who’s Sheffield based, loves the building and loves restoring.”
Friends of the Old Town Hall, the group which has been campaigning for the restoration of the building, have said it is keen to meet the buyer for a discussion on his plans for the heritage building. Brian Holmshaw, joint honorary secretary of the group, said: “We invite the new owner to meet us at our next open meeting on 28 March.
“He’ll find a friendly audience of people enthused by the few comments that have been made in public about the owner’s plans for the building. The previous owners never bothered to reply when we asked them to meet, but we’re a community group that’s always been ready to talk to anyone aiming to restore this wonderful building with proper respect for its architectural and historic significance.
“We don’t want Sheffielders to think the problem is sorted. There’s a very long way to go. For a start, the deterioration goes on. Some work has been done in the past month to clear rubbish from the building and to start to repair the roof, but it’s far from finished, the repairs seem to be temporary and rain is still getting in.
The mammoth task of restoring a building with more than 20 years of neglect is something the group want to discuss. scale of the restoration task. “We know probably better than anyone in the city what the task looks like, and, crucially, what it’s going to cost. We’re still the Friends of the Old Town Hall and we’ll be monitoring developments, ready to speak out if needs be.”
Find out more about the Friends of the Old Town Hall at sheffieldoldtownhall.co.uk.