BEFORE we all get carried away with grand ideas of what the Commemoration Hall could become, should we not first look where it all started and why and for what purpose? In 1945 it was resolved at a public meeting that the commemoration (hence the hall s n
BEFORE we all get carried away with grand ideas of what the Commemoration Hall could become, should we not first look where it all started and why and for what purpose?
In 1945 it was resolved at a public meeting that the commemoration (hence the hall's name) of the services of the men and women of Huntingdon during the Second World War and of the victories in Europe and in the Far East should take the form of a public hall. Those wishing to change the hall's name should spend a little more time on why it has the name Commemoration Hall, instead of thinking of more fashionable names in an effort to sell theatre tickets.
If the hall is to be a theatre with a proposed commercial cafe in the building, will it meet the terms in the trust deed: "The said Hall and any landed property from time to time held therewith shall be held by the trustees on charitable trust for the benefit of the inhabitants of Huntingdon to provide for them and particularly for those of them who are persons of small means facilities for their recreation and welfare".
Does a theatre building which will attract people from a wider area than the town of Huntingdon with a commercial cafe really cover the conditions of the trust deed?
Further on the question of a proposed commercial cafe in the building, I wonder what the other owners of eating establishments in the town feel about competition from somebody operating from a building which has a very favourable rate demand from the district council.
THE Commemoration Hall will never be the facility that Huntingdon deserves - developing it will be a waste of money.
Yes, the town council has vision as far as a growing Huntingdon needs a good performing arts centre for all to use - for drama, music, art, dance and community events. There is the performing arts centre at Hinchingbrooke School, but Huntingdon needs a facility that can be used throughout the year with no restrictions.
Drama is not the only performing art as suggested by the town council in your article. This hall must offer a "hall facility" for all community groups - not just a drama facility plus a few rooms. (This comes from someone who has been involved in local drama for many years.)
The Commemoration Hall has restrictions, but should be kept as an affordable multi-use hall for all community organisations to hire.
The energy of the town council should go towards providing a new multi-use 500-plus-person facility, in keeping with the developing Huntingdon. In this age of partnership working, the town council should seek out other parties to help achieve this goal.