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National Park should listen to government advice and sell Sedbergh building to community

June 20, 2011 1:11 PM

Tim in SedberghLocal MP Tim Farron is calling on the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority to listen to the government's advice and agree that 72 Main Street in Sedbergh should be sold to a community trust to save the building.

In an interview for Third Sector Today, the decentralisation minister Greg Clark today said: 'authorities should take seriously any requests for help in saving assets such as pubs, piers and markets. Councils should use compulsory purchase powers to help charities buy buildings and turn them into community resources, according to the latest guidance from the Communities and Local Government department.'

Local community group Sedbergh Townscape Initiative had raised £60,000 to purchase 72 Main Street, which houses the town's tourist information and local community centre. The building is currently home to many local community groups and charities.

However the national park authority rejected the bid and has now put the property on to the open market. Tim is campaigning to persuade the national park authority to back the community bid and save the building for the people of Sedbergh.

Tim said: "Having heard what Greg Clark has said today I want the national park authority to act on his words. Evelyn Westwood and the Townscape Initiative have found £60,000 to keep the building in public ownership and save a vital community asset. I will keep campaigning until we save it for local groups."