Council to sell Craigielea and St Clements
Shetland Islands Council is to raise extra cash by selling St Clement’s Hall and the former Craigielea residential care home.
An earlier decision of the Executive Committee was noted at yesterday’s Council meeting. It comes as a full asset strategy is under consideration which could see several more properties owned by the council being placed on the open market. Councillors were advised yesterday that the asset strategy will come before the Executive Committee on 19th of this month.
Alan Rolfe, assets and properties manager, recommended that the council declare the two buildings surplus to requirements and should be advertised for sale.
Craigielea was used until January 2007 as a residential care home. At that time the service was transferred to Newcraigielea and the old premises have remained unused. Consideration was first given to conversion to flats for use by the Housing Service and more recently, in June 2010, the Council decided to advertise the property to let for the restricted purposes of childcare.
St Clement's Hall was, until November 2004, let to the St Clements Badminton Club. Since that time it has been used only for short periods as occasional storage by Shetland Islands Games 2005 Ltd, the Red Cross, Islesburgh Drama Group and the local Baptist Church. Consideration has been given over this period to conversion to a Council Chamber or to flats but neither proposal has proceeded, again due mainly to the cost of repair and refurbishment.
Council leader Josie Simpson said:
“Selling these propertieswill not only raise much needed cash for the council at a time when every penny counts, but will release us from the burden of maintaining and repairing two buildings. It is to be hoped these buildings will become assets to the community, either restored by private developers or taken over by community groups.
"Selling vacant buildings was something that came up several times during our recent series of public meetings on possible savings. Although we were already planning to sell these buildings before the meetings took place, it is good that our decision is in line with what the public were telling us."