PRESENT – Jennifer Allan, Duncan Brooks, Gilly Dixon-Spain, Archie McGillivary, Hubert Saldanha, Anna Stewart, Denise Willis, Carol Wormleighton and Julian Wormleighton.

There were 26 members of the public at the meeting.  


Julian thanked everyone present for coming and passed round a sheet for everyone to sign. 

Julian stated that he wanted to make it clear that no decisions had been made regarding the future development of the hall.  It will be up to the next committee to pursue the development/improvements.

Julian then pointed out the displays showing the plans which formed part of the feasibility study, there was also a breakdown of the costs.  We can no longer pursue the planned improvements as the offer of the ground at the North gable has been withdrawn and Gill and Davie have offered us a smaller area extending 3m from the gable or a contribution to the abortive feasibility costs.

Julian then invited questions from the public. 

It was asked how the total cost of £950k had been ascertained, Julian explained that we had employed an Architect and Quantity Surveyor who had calculated the physical construction costs to be £600K + VAT + professional fees + allowance for increase in costs.

It was asked if possible funding bodies had been considered and Julian said that we had not approached any funders as you need to have had a feasibility study undertaken prior to applying for any grants.  AIE had been approached about getting the land purchase costs from the Scottish Land Fund.  There are a number of bodies who can be approached for funding including Big Lottery Fund and  Aggregate Tax.  Some members of the committee are going to meet with the Lottery funders to discuss the prospect of grants.

Regarding the future development of the hall, it was agreed that we have 2 options:  

  1. New Build on new site and slight improvements on exisiting.
  2. Improve existing as much as possible within constraints and try to cover most of the requirements e.g new kitchen, storage, energy efficiency etc.

 Without extending it was agreed that we would be restricted to what improvements could be made and it was also agreed that £950K is a lot to spend on improving the existing Hall.  Other views were that the existing Hall will not meet the islands requirements in the future and that we should just pursue a new build and that £950K would be better spent on a new build. 

It was asked whether the Hall could be sold to raise funds for a new build. The original Hall site was given to the island and we are not able to sell it, the areas of ground which have been extended onto were bought by the hall.  Argyll Estates were approached a few years ago to see if it was possible to release us from the clause regarding the selling of the Hall – the response was negative at that time but this is something which could be looked into further.

Concerns were expressed about Hall Hire charges if we proceeded with a new build.  The hire charges are used for the year to year running costs of the Hall and it would be hoped that a new build would be much more energy efficient than the existing hall, Insurance etc would probably cost more but if the new hall was hired out more frequently perhaps for weddings then this would help.  We should ensure that we have no Capital Debt to pay off on completion of the new build if it were to go ahead.

It was noted that there is nowhere for the younger members of the community to meet and that this should be considered.

There have been no possible sites for a new-build looked at by the committee. 

It was suggested that we should arrange a visit to other newly built halls to see what can be done and to speak to other committees who have experienced a new-build.

The survey which was carried out a couple of years ago on the island in which committee members went round all households was 55/50 in favour of improving the existing Hall.  As our options have now changed it was felt that we should seek people’s views again.

A show of hands for the 2 options -1 and 2 above. (including letters/representations received)  

Option 1 – 30

Option 2 – 10  

As the number of people at the meeting could not be considered fully representative it was agreed that further enquiries should be done by the new committee.

It was also agreed that the provision of additional parking spaces should be pursued whatever option is decided upon.

Mairi asked about the charges for the hire of the surgery as the Doctor and the community had been involved in funding the cost of the surgery extension.  It is the committees understanding that the Health Board pay the rental and the District Valuer had been working as an independent advisor for the Health Board and the Hall when he had valued the surgery rental this year.

Julian thanked everyone for attending. 


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