Thursday, 24 June 2021

Church hall out of bounds

WATLINGTON church hall has been cordoned off.

WATLINGTON church hall has been cordoned off.

Railings have been erected around the building to prevent access.

The hall was closed to the public in September after a structural engineer concluded that the roof was unsafe.

Christopher Evans, rector of St Leonard’s Church, said the measures were to “safeguard the public”.

The closure of the hall has been criticised by members of campaign group Church Hall Concern who suggested that it was linked to the church’s plan to sell the land.

The parochial church council has been in talks with the Diocese of Oxford about possibly demolishing the hall and selling the land to pay for an extension to the church for several years.

In October, Rev Evans said the hall must be sold in order to keep the church sustainable as it was at risk of not being able to pay its bills for the first time since he arrived 26 years ago.

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