Kingston Council is exploring opportunities to safeguard the future of the historic Guildhall whilst increasing public access, updating civic facilities and improving spaces for service delivery.
The council is committed to retaining the Guildhall and is working harder than ever to find even more cost-effective ways to provide residents with the best possible services. Ensuring council assets are used most effectively is a vital part of its commitment to using resources best to benefit communities.
As part of this work, the council is looking at refurbishing the Guildhall building to celebrate its historical context and continue its purpose as the civic heart of Kingston whilst providing a cost-effective way to accommodate the Council’s services and staff in a more sustainable and accessible building.
When the council last spoke to people in 2021 about possible future proposals for the Guildhall, 77 per cent of respondents said they wanted continued public access to the space, with 93 per cent thinking restoring the building for future generations was important.
While potential plans for the future of the main Guildhall are being developed, the council will continue to use the 1970s office building, known as Guildhall 2, as its principal office space in the meantime. The other 1970s office building on the site, Guildhall 1, will be brought forward for sale.
This project is very early, and local communities, staff and other stakeholders will be asked to share their views on future proposals as they take shape. A report and outline business case detailing the options that have been considered will be presented to the council’s Corporate and Resources Committee on 20 February. Councillors will be asked to consider selecting a preferred alternative and moving to the next stage of the project by agreeing on the initial funding needed to appoint a design team to develop the proposals further and carry out public engagement.
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