Shepway District Council to consider selling Folkestone Indoor Bowls Site.

Shepway District Council (SDC) are considering selling off Folkestone Indoor Bowls Centre on Cheriton Road Folkestone. It is understood that two offers to purchase the site have been made by two supermarkets. The land on which the Bowls Centre sits is owned by SDC who purchased the Cheriton Sports Ground site (which includes the bowls centre), on the 24/12/2004, for the princely some of  £750,000.

Screenshot from 2018-01-19 09-47-19

The decision to sell the Indoor Bowls Centre will be taken at the Cabinet Meeting on the 28th February 2018. “It is anticipated that this report will contain information which is exempt from publication and during discussion of this information the public may be excluded from the meeting.

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“If you wish to make representations that the public should not be excluded from the meeting during discussion of this item, please email Committee Services at committee@shepway.gov.uk, stating the reasons why you think the discussion should be held in public.

dick

Cllr Dick Pascoe (pictured) is a director of Folkestone Bowls Association Limited who operate the site and was appointed on the 29th Oct 2014. He is also Cabinet member for Property Management and Environmental Health. So will he recuse himself from any decision which may be made on the 28th Feb?

According to the latest set of accounts lodged at Companies House on the 12th Oct 2017, Folkestone Bowls Association Limited made a loss of £15,266 up to March 2017. In the previous year it had made a profit of £36,101.

On the 25th Feb 2015 at SDC’s Cabinet meeting a renewal of the lease for the Indoor Bowls Club was discussed in Report C-14-83. An Independent valuation on the rent was sought and can be seen here However, in 2014 Folkestone Bowls Association Ltd, were not happy with the terms and conditions offered by SDC and their response can be seen here It was resolved at the Cabinet meeting of the 25th Feb 2015:

To approve the proposed approach to the offer of a new lease to the Folkestone Bowls Association Ltd, as set out in paragraph 1.4 of this report.

  • To authorise the Head of Housing, Land and Property, in consultation with the Solicitor to the Council to finalise the details of the proposed lease with the Folkestone Bowls Association Ltd.

  • That during the subsistence of the lease (and subject to a schedule of dilapidation) a grant of £10,000 per annum or part thereof payable quarterly in arrears and on condition that the grant shall not be regarded as a total of £50,000 but only of £10,000 per annum subject to a maximum of 5 years.

  • That the Council’s logo is included in all Folkestone Bowls Association Ltd publicity material.

All 10 Cabinet members voted for the motion.

We have spoken about Shepway District Council selling off the family silver previously. Folkestone already has Tesco’s, Morrisons (next door to the site) Sainsbury’s, Asda’s and Lidl’s. Does Folkestone need another supermarket?

Selling the Centre will put money before health. Health professionals recommend playing bowls, particularly for older people, as it provides a number of health benefits, including:

  • improved fitness

  • improved coordination and skill development

  • increased confidence and self-esteem

  • enhanced mental wellbeing

  • community connectedness and support.

Should SDC sell the land? We think not as the elderly need to stay fit as much as young people, plus it gives them somewhere to go and keeps them off the streets. 😉

The Shepwayvox Team

 

 

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13 Comments on Shepway District Council to consider selling Folkestone Indoor Bowls Site.

  1. If Dick does not vote against this as he is a member of the Cabinet, he’ll lose my vote forever. I have played at the Indoor Centre for 25 years and another supermarket we do not need. As the SV Team point out we have already have Sainsbury’s x2, Tesco, Morrison, Lidl & Asda, what will another supermarket sell that’s different from those named above.

    Also the Conservatives have had to name a loneliness minster – Tracy Crouch. If we lose the centre more elderly people such as myself will become lonely as they’ll be less and less places for us to go. Do consider that Dick.

  2. Do the bowls club have a lease on the building? Perhaps it is coming up for renewal and the terms are no longer favourable. This would give the council an ideal opportunity to sell. It may be worth looking into a little more. We most certainly do not need another supermarket but perhaps the Three Hills Sports Park need more land!

  3. What’s wrong with the local bowls community? – fight for your right to roll!

  4. The price of everything——

  5. Get the councillors to take a cut in there expenses and cut Alistair Stewart’s pension and pay . That will cover costs to keep the Indoor Bowls Centre open

  6. Do not let the local cartel discuss this without any local representation use email address provided ( committee@shepway.gov.uk ) and ask to have discussions in public.
    You can use template below;

    I understand that the possible sale of the Folkestone Indoor Bowls Centre site is to be discussed by a cabinet meeting on
    28th February 2018. I feel very strongly that any decisions made about this very important local amenity should be subject to full public scrutiny and public consultation. It may be the case that discussions of the bids received may be commercially sensitive, but the arguments as to whether the site should be sold at all, is one that can and should be considered in public so that local council tax and business rate payers are accorded full disclosure of the Council’s reasons.

  7. If anyone wants to built another supermarket in Folkestone then there is a the old Silver Spring site in Park Farm. The council should and must refuse any application for the Bowls Club site. The council should maintain the towns sporting facilities and subsidise them if necessary. Once these facilities are gone it is rare for them to comeback. Such decisions should not be made behind close doors.

  8. So many supermarkets, so few public amenities. Unless SDC plan to immediately build a new indoor bowls center ( which I doubt) the fact they are even considering selling the bowls Center is scandalous.
    It’s a great shame that in this country, keeping sporting venues is not valued enough as it always comes down to money and not what is right for the people living in the area. We need more, not less amenities.

  9. Ray Harvey // October 24, 2018 at 17:38 // Reply

    I have just become a member of The Folkestone Bowls Club ( Oct 2018 ) and I am amazed of the wonderful facilities that the over sixties enjoy so much. I am shocked to hear that the property is being sold off. Why can’t the bowlers buy the place, they can all become share holders . Can anyone tell me why this can’t happen. We have two years to fund raise and make this happen.

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