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Council provides update on City Hall as it continues to plan for its future

An update was heard at Salisbury Area Board

Published 17 June 2022

Wiltshire Council has provided an update on its Salisbury entertainment venue City Hall, as it continues to plan for its long-term future.

The update on the building was presented at Salisbury Area Board on 16 June and covered the following.  

During April and May the council carried out a soft market test exercise, the aim of which was to understand the level of interest among third-party organisations in potentially managing City Hall on their behalf. A number of organisations replied to a council questionnaire and those responses are in the process of being analysed.

The soft market testing is just one mechanism the council is using to help establish the best way forward for the venue, as they continue to actively look at all the options available to get the building back up and running as an entertainment and cultural venue beyond when the NHS require it.

The council remains in positive discussions with the NHS regarding City Hall's use as a vaccination centre, with the site expected to continue in its current role until at least the end of March 2023.

The council is also looking at potential funding sources to enhance the operational offer at City Hall. However, reopening the building is not dependent on any successful bid. 

Cllr Richard Clewer, Leader of Wiltshire Council and Cabinet Member for Heritage, Tourism and the Arts, said:

"While City Hall has been occupied by the NHS we've continued to work diligently behind the scenes to establish the best options for the future of the venue, so that when it does reopen it's there for the long term and has the best possible chance of success.

"It's important that the future of City Hall isn't planned in isolation and when it reopens we'll ensure it fits in with the overall cultural offer and vision of the city, now and into the future.

"We're always looking at ways to enhance and improve Wiltshire, and actively looking for funding sources shows our ambition and we'll continue to explore all avenues available to us.

"Our planning and discussions on City Hall will continue and we'll keep people updated on the latest developments".

As stated in its Business Plan, the council's mission includes ensuring local communities continue to be beautiful and exciting places to live, and that the local economy thrives.

Regular updates will be available on the our City Hall information page, which also contains some FAQs.

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