Stroud Town Council has published its ambitious business plan to save the Subscription Rooms for public use.
Town Councillors are now calling for all of the bids to be made public to ensure there is complete transparency in the District Council’s consultation about the venue’s future.
Stroud District Council owns the Sub Rooms and is carrying out a review of the venue.
It will be hold a public event at the Sub Rooms on 18 November from 9.30am to 1pm. The final decision will then be made on 5 December.
There are two other bids for the Sub Rooms: an in-house one from the District Council, and one from Ecotricity to buy the building.
The Town Council, at its meeting last night, reiterated its commitment to ensuring that the Sub Rooms remain in public ownership.
Councillors also agreed to write a letter to Stroud District Council, raising concerns about the consultation process, the lack of time for the public and community organisations to comment on the bids, and questioning the criteria used for assessing the bids.
“The Town Council is committed to genuine public consultation and disclosure,” said Town Mayor Kevin Cranston. “Councillors believe that transparency is absolutely essential for a healthy democracy.
“We recognise the enormous financial pressures that the District Council faces, but its original reason for reviewing the future of the Sub Rooms was to save it losing money running the venue, not to make a profit from its sale.
“In all public consultations so far, the community has overwhelmingly backed the Sub Rooms remaining in public ownership, and we the Town Council are committed to achieving that.”
The Council has worked with Stroud Trust to put together a viable bid to take over the venue.
“The only way to get a win-win solutions is for all the people involved to sit down together, set aside their preconceived ideas and work together for what is best for our town and our Sub Rooms. The people of Stroud deserve nothing less,” said Councillor Cranston.