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Station Building – to Let. What is going on? Well. what was going to be a quiet week (for us) suddenly changed when we were invited to a meeting being held by Network and Northern Rail managers to review their future plans for the station building now that the core and shell works were complete. Northern had decided that it did not require any space in the building, so Network Rail decided to advertise for a tenant for the building (noticeboards are up), but due it’s ‘quirky’ layout they did not expect there would be a single commercial tenant for the building. In that case, Network Rail would prefer to let to a single (community) tenant who would do the fit out and manage its use – namely the Station Building charity group. Network Rail stated that a long lease term (25 years) might be possible for the Station Building Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO), and that the rental of the lease would depend on what activities were in the building. The more community activities the lower the rent would be, but if more commercial the rent would be higher. Network Rail will only accept a single tenant – who could sub-let, bearing in mind that any non-community activity could attract higher rents. The running of the building must be viable – some income from all users. The CIO Trustees were invited to – • Work out demand and potential usage of the building • Produce business plan to show what would be an economic business model for the operation of the station. • Negotiate lease with Network Rail • Appoint architect/project manager • suitable design for fit out works – water, electricity etc • and estimated cost of works, so that can develop funding package for the works. Interesting times ! At present, there will be no access to/from the building via the platform. Rooms on first and second floors will be via steps only – suitable for private studios etc. We hope to have a meeting with the railway soon in order to clarify their conditions. Once we have an outline plan, we will be calling a Public Meeting to discuss what the community want. So, some of our aspirations for a community hub in the refurbished station building. Ground floor – step-free. A café reading room – Library with community café, also available for drop-in centres and other social functions during the day. Becomes a community meeting room during the evening. The Station Partnership is already associated with the Community Rail Lancashire and all their socially inclusion projects – their recent Autism Aware train. Likewise, we are ‘twinned’ with Bentham station and their internationally acclaimed Dementia Awareness project. We would consider similar facilities here at Mytholmroyd – plus educational projects on safe and responsible train travel for the youngsters at our local and regional schools. First and Second floors – steps only (at present). Private studios for artists and other creative people – who we know, are all around this district. These are just a few of the current ideas on possible community uses – must be many more……. So, it could be up to us, the local community what happens to the station building!