Rolle could be up an running for �100k
It could take just �100,000 to get Rolle College’s three main buildings up and running for community use.
And the town hall last week reaffirmed a previous pledge of almost a third of that sum, �30,000 - while a plan has been put in place to raise a further �50,000.
Roger Staker, the director of Rolle Exmouth Ltd (REL), told the councillors at the last finance committee meeting the good news.
He added that the not-for-profit company, set up by Exmouth residents, could get access to the site as early as October.
It is the latest twist in the two-year battle to secure the ‘best bit’ of the college, including the 13,000 sq ft Owen building, the Daw building and the administrative building for community use.
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Last month, Roy Pryke, chairman of Rolle Exmouth Ltd, announced they had brokered a deal with owners Plymouth University, which would allow them to buy ‘over half’ of the Douglas Avenue site over the next three years.
This would allow REL to use the site as a post-16 college - an addition to the community college - and for exhibitions, concerts, theatre, business conferences and small business units.
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Mr Staker said that, while the buildings had been mothballed, several companies had already shown interest in leasing parts of the building.
Once the lease had been signed with the university, he said, shares could be issued and, with sponsorship and fundraising, �50k could be raised.
He added that initial shares would be used for start-up costs and they were having talks with the community college about its needs. He also raised the possibility of taking out a commercial loan to cover any shortfall.
He said: “They are very substantial buildings and the expectation is that the cost of repairs will be in excess of �100k to re-commission and start using the buildings.”