Scores of people in Stroud are working with the Town Council, Stroud District Council and the community organisation Stroud Trust to safeguard the future of the Subscription Rooms.
An action group, including the Town Council, Stroud Common Wealth, Stroud Trust, Subs Community Association, Keep Our Subs Public and the Subs Forum have been meeting regularly to work on a bid for the lease of the venue.
Stroud MP David Drew has also attended one of the recent meetings to give his support to the community bid.
Mr Drew has previously said: “I would prefer to see the Sub Rooms retained by the community. I would also prefer Stroud, and society as a whole, not to be enduring the cost of the government’s failed austerity programme.”
More than 600 people have completed a survey about the Sub Rooms and how it should be run in the future.
Members of the Town Council and the Stroud Trust have met the District Council to discuss how to make the Sub Rooms a viable, cost-effective and vibrant community venue.
Councillor Doina Cornell, leader of Stroud District Council, said she was pleased about the positive discussions around the future of the Subs Rooms.
“We welcome all the interest from those in the community who want to find the best solution for the Subs Rooms,” said Councillor Cornell.
“The Town Council and Stroud Trust have positively engaged with the latest process as proposals to run the Subs are put together, so we’ve been able to assist with any queries they had, and we look forward to seeing their proposal when it is submitted next month.”
Stroud Town Mayor Kevin Cranston said a lot of work has to be done in the next few weeks to ensure the business plan was robust and safeguard the future of the Subscription Rooms.
“The aim is to build on the current offer with positive changes and improvements that will make long-term financial savings for the District Council, keep the Subs Rooms as a public-owned and operated venue and rejuvenate the building so that it is vibrant arts and culture centre with something for everybody,” said Councillor Cranston.
“Over the coming weeks there will be a fundraising campaign launched and dialogue with the District Council, Stroud Trust and interested community groups will continue. Stroud people are pulling together to try and make this work.
“We all completely understand that the Subs will need – in time – to support itself. What we are trying to do is ensure that happens.”
Councillor Cranston said there had been some concerns raised about the lease conditions at earlier community group meetings, but these have now been addressed.
“The minutes of these meetings are in the public domain as we want the process to be transparent. It was the first meeting after the original bidding process and people were venting their frustrations but now nearly everyone has moved on.
“The fact that more than 600 people have responded to our latest survey on the Subs clearly demonstrates the support for improvements to the venue to make it self-sustaining for long-term community use.
“The only way that the Subs will become a successful community venue is with the backing of the community.”
For further information about the background on the bid to save the Sub Rooms please see:
Concerned about the Subs? (23/01/2018)
Town Council confirm commitment to Sub Rooms (20/12/2017)
District Councillors agree to bids for 30 year lease on Subs (06/12/2017)
We’re committed to turning Subs into a thriving venue (21/11/2017)
Published: business plan to save Subs (31/10/17)
Subscription Rooms bid (30/10/2017)
Subscription Rooms – Stroud Trust and Stroud Town Council Statement (25/10/2017)
Town Council calling for Subs to remain in public ownership (17/10/2017)
Revealed: group behind proposal to save Sub Rooms (18/08/2017)
Council backing community trust to take over the Subs (11/07/2017)