People can have a say about what happens to Stroud’s historic chapel of rest in the town cemetery.
Stroud District Council is considering the future of the Victorian chapel as part of a larger review of its assets.
Stroud Town Council is leading the consultation to find what people think about the chapel, and to gather ideas about what the building could most usefully be developed for if a decision to purchase it was agreed.
The chapel building is currently used mainly as a grounds maintenance depot. Stroud Town Council has an option to acquire the Chapel for community use, with one part potentially to be used to generate income to cover running costs.
The Town Council has secured a £5,000 grant from the Architectural Heritage Fund to enable the viability of purchasing the Chapel to be explored.
The chapel and cemetery in Bisley Road were created in the 1850s. Stroud Burial Board purchased a six-acre site at the edge of town and commissioned two Chapels of Rest and an entrance lodge to be built in Cotswold stone.
The cemetery was divided into three sections: one for Conformists, one for Non-Conformists and the third for paupers of the Parish. The old cemetery is now a nature reserve, one of a few in the country based in a cemetery.
“The Town Council has first refusal on buying the Chapel from the district council but before we make an offer we need to know that we can find a use that will cover the costs of maintaining a listed building that is also home to some rare bats,” said Town Mayor Kevin Cranston.
“We know that many people would like the building to stay in public ownership as it originally belonged to the people of Stroud but we are also mindful that we must act responsibly with public finances.”
People can access the brief survey at http://bit.ly/2ha91b0.
The closing date for responses is Friday 20th January 2017.