Wednesday, April 26, 2023

News: Rotherham Council set to spend another £1m on town centre property


Rotherham Council's cabinet has given the go ahead for the authority to make further "strategic acquisitions" in Rotherham town centre using £1m of its own money.

The regeneration programme is now well underway using central government and Council funding and the council has already agreed that to facilitate the continued development of regeneration the town centre it is necessary to bring privately owned land into public sector ownership.

A further £1m for Strategic Land Assembly was approved in the Council's recent budget for 2022/23. This builds on acquisitions made through the Levelling Up, Town Deal and the Council’s 2021/22 capital allocation of the £1m Strategic Acquisition Fund.

As reported by Rothbiz, previous acquisitions include properties and plots of land for more housing on sites in the Sheffield Road and Westgate area of town and the former bingo hall and retail unit vacated by Wilko's to extend the Leisure & Cultural Quarter onto Corporation Street alongside the new Forge Island development nearby.

£70m is being used from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing & Communities through the Town Deal and Levelling Up Fund. This comes in addition to the £12.6m from the Future High Streets Fund.

The council's cabinet has approved the public sector intervention to acquire land and property owned by the private sector by delegating powers necessary to negotiate and acquire key strategic sites.

The extra £1m provided by the Council, as opposed to a central funding body, gives additional flexibility and "allows the Council to move at pace when the opportunity to acquire is presented. This will allow the Council to continue to react to acquisition and development opportunities swiftly and positively as and when they may arise and to support regeneration, housing and economic recovery."

A report adds: "The Town Centre is currently home to a number of vacant, abandoned and derelict buildings and acquisition and public sector control of privately owned properties is a route to deliver on the Town Centre Masterplan ambitions."

Another property has been identified to aid the continued diversification and regeneration of the town centre, but details have not been disclosed due to commercial issues.

Cllr. Chris Read, leader of Rotherham Council, explained: "In terms of the transparency, Cabinet gives permission, in effect, for money to be spent om particular land or buildings. The specifics of those has to be kept private for commercially sensative reasons. In layman's terms, if somebody knows that we are trying to buy something from them, the price immediately goes up."

Should acquisition of this property be unsuccessful or its acquisition leaves a surplus budget, properties previously identified will be considered for acquisition.

Rothbiz reported earlier this month that the council had issued the legal documents for the Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) to finally deal with two large burnt out buildings on Corporation Street. A decision has also recently been published regarding the acquisition of property at Westgate / Sheffield Road showing that an agreement had been reached with the private sector owner of the relevant land, and that the delegation seeks to finalise the necessary transactions.

Images: Google Maps


Anonymous,  April 26, 2023 at 6:40 PM  

We need council built homes for local people, and shops back in town centre.

Anonymous,  April 26, 2023 at 7:06 PM  

Great news. The bandstand and cenotaph have had their day.

Anonymous,  April 26, 2023 at 11:51 PM  

And I need a hip replacement and a new Ferrari, but....

Anonymous,  April 27, 2023 at 6:41 AM  

Be a shame about the bandstand. Saw Marc Bolan and T-Rex there many years ago. I. believe even the great Screaming Lord Such once played there.

Anonymous,  April 27, 2023 at 10:23 AM  

I wonder what properties RMBC are talking about buying and knocking down now?

Anonymous,  April 27, 2023 at 2:48 PM  

Lord Such was a much underrated singer. Only a politically motivated conspiracy prevented him winning the Eurovision Song Contest. He was beaten into second place by the entry from Iceland : "We must mend our fishing nets before the nights draw in"

Anonymous,  April 27, 2023 at 3:56 PM  

His Jack the Ripper song and routine were classics. At the time he was considered to be even more scary than Maggie Thatcher

Anonymous,  April 27, 2023 at 3:57 PM  

There are rumours that they want to demolish Magna and build a steelworks.

Anonymous,  April 27, 2023 at 5:46 PM  

Screaming Lord Such was the 3td Earl of Harrow and committed suicide when he was 58. He was a regular on the Rotherham music scene in the 60s and appeared at Rawmarsh Baths, Rotherham Baths and the Twist Club among other venues. Founded the Monster Raving Loony Party and contested many national elections. In retrospect the Party seemed quite normal compared to the shower we elect today.

Anonymous,  April 28, 2023 at 7:11 AM  

The planning Department are keen to make it easier for Rotherham folk to use library facilities in the town centre. So the plan is to demolish Millmoor and build a new library. Free train travel to Masborough Station will then be laid on.

Anonymous,  April 28, 2023 at 11:23 AM  

'There are rumours that they want to demolish Magna and build a steelworks' Utter rubbish!

Anonymous,  April 28, 2023 at 5:08 PM  

Sorry, I meant to put that they want to demolish Parkgate Shopping and build a steel works.
And there's me thinking only the Americans were irony deaf.

Anonymous,  April 30, 2023 at 7:34 AM  

I'm not so sure that the chap who can smell ganga everywhere he goes is all that wide of the mark. The smell was so strong outside the Interchange last week it made me feel quite light headed. I actually imagined that I saw a policeman in the town centre!

Anonymous,  April 30, 2023 at 5:33 PM  

Really? That must be powerful weed man!

Anonymous,  May 1, 2023 at 12:06 PM  

It was probably a Special or a County Borough bouncer

Anonymous,  May 2, 2023 at 7:09 AM  

Is it true that the job of a County bouncer is to keep undesirable, foul mouthed and inebriated customers inside the pub?

Anonymous,  May 2, 2023 at 1:07 PM  

It is, but they still spew out onto the pavement

Anonymous,  May 2, 2023 at 2:53 PM  

Yes, you could almost be in Paris.

Anonymous,  May 2, 2023 at 7:31 PM  

That's inseine

Anonymous,  May 3, 2023 at 4:43 PM  

As a work commuter to your town I have always been struck by the sophistication of it's cafe culture as exemplified by the clientele of the County, the Plough and Tasty Bite. Even the street drinkers have that certain je ne sais quoi. Best wishes to your council in it's bid to host European City of Culture

Anonymous,  May 3, 2023 at 6:08 PM  

Wow. That is great news for the town!

Anonymous,  May 4, 2023 at 6:16 AM  

Brilliant. Now bring on the Eurovision Song Contest at Bradgate Club!

Anonymous,  May 6, 2023 at 7:12 AM  

You may well mock madam, but let me tell you that Rotherham has a splendid tradition of successfully showcasing internationally renowned cultural events. In the late fifties a lady, who's name escapes me for the moment, broke the world record for nonstop piano playing on the stage of the Cinema in Doncaster Gate. The event was covered by the world's media, including the Cairo Advertiser, although their reporter later admitted that he thought the event was in Rotterdam.
Clifton Park has also hosted the International potato peeling Championships and plans are afoot to hold the Burnt Out Buildings of the World Awards in Corporation Street, although the town faces stiff competition from Beirut.

Anonymous,  May 6, 2023 at 8:08 AM  

The lady in question who played piano at the Cinema was a certain Mrs Mills, quite an accomplished Honkey tonk pianist in her day. She recorded several albums and once shared a studio with the Beatles at Abbey Road

Anonymous,  May 6, 2023 at 9:06 AM  

The potato peeling Championships had royal patronage and were opened by King Edward

Anonymous,  May 7, 2023 at 9:47 AM  

But Prince Andrew's observation that he preferred Maris Piper had organisers alarmed for a while

Anonymous,  May 7, 2023 at 1:11 PM  

Your post about the Cinema brought back memories of the Saturday Morning Rush. For a tanner you saw an episode of Flash Gordon, a cartoon, a singalong and the the main feature, usually a Western. About 15 of us went from the Clifton area. One of us would pay the tanner and then race round to open the fire exit door for the others. As this was next door to the store room we would help ourselves to sweets and ice creams on our way in.
Such a pity the place got into financial difficulties!

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