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Appeal to reopen Ryedale Indoor Bowls Club building
2:43pm Wednesday 4th September 2013 in News
CAMPAIGNERS hoping to secure the future of the former Ryedale Indoor Bowls Club are urging district councillors to reopen the building on a temporary basis.
The new committee, which aims to take over the running of the club, has put forward a request for a licence to use the club for its winter season between September and December.
Members of the Ryedale Leisure and Community Centre steering committee are urging bowls players and other users of the club to attend a meeting of Ryedale District Council tomorrow (Thursday) at 6.30pm at Ryedale House to show their support for the move.
Committee member Barrie Elener said if Ryedale District Council agreed, there would be an opportunity for bowlers to play at the centre again.
He said: “Far more than this, it will be a big opportunity for all bowlers and all other past and future users of the centre to really make the effort, turn out and come down to Norton and use the great facilities on offer.
“If we cannot show that there is a real need for these facilities, then it may well be that, come the end of December, there is not enough enthusiasm to continue to fight and work towards the goal of maintaining the excellent indoor bowling facilities, but also changing and utilising the space and creating a Community Leisure Centre in Norton for all the people of Ryedale.
“Now is the time for everyone who cares about this unique facility in the heart of Ryedale, to rally to the cause and demonstrate to all district councillors that they should reconsider the whole idea of selling the building and, as a starter, grant a licence for the new steering group to open the centre for indoor bowling and other community and leisure activities.”
The steering group wants to acquire the building and transform it into a community hub, with a number of core tenants, alongside a variety of other regular users.
It would continue to cater for indoor bowls, but would look to reduce the bowling space from eight lanes to four.
A report to members of Ryedale District Council said officers has met with members of the steering club which was preparing a business case to enable it to raise funds to bid for the building.
As part of the request for a licence, rent of £850 per month along with payment of utility costs during the period of occupation would be required.
Coun Di Keal (Lib Dem), deputy mayor of Norton and a district councillor, said: “I would urge my colleagues on Ryedale District Council to grant the licence that will see the bowls players back in the building and playing again as soon as possible.
“The Ryedale Community and Leisure Centre steering committee is working on pulling together a business plan and finding funding to secure the future of the building long-term. But, in the meantime, it makes absolute sense to see the building used rather than stood empty.’
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