Kensal Rise Library listed as a ‘community asset’ by Brent Council
Status granted to Victorian building could scupper or stall its sale
A former library under threat of being sold to developers has been listed as a ‘community asset’ by Brent Council, a move which could scupper or stall any potential sale.
Kensal Rise Library, in Bathurst Gardens has been listed as an ‘Asset of Community Value’ following a bid from campaign group the Friends of Kensal Rise (FOKR).
The move means the group will have a Community Right to Bid, which would prevent the sale to anyone else for six months. The building, which is owned by All Souls College in Oxford, is one of six libraries shut down by Brent Council last year.
It was given to the council as a gift from the college in the late 1800’s but earlier this year a reverter was triggered meaning the building fell back into the college’s hands.
Since then campaign groups and All Souls have been locked in discussions about a proposal to run a community library.
However, the college opted to sell most of the building to a developer and leave 1,500sq ft of space for a library, an offer which the FOKR have claimed is not sufficient.
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Margaret Bailey, a member of FOKR said they were now ‘considering their options’.
She said: “We are very pleased that Brent Council have decided to accept our nomination and have placed the library building on the council’s lists of assets of community value.
“It is a very public statement that the entire building is a community asset, not just a small corner of it, and furthermore that it is valued by the community.”
All Souls said they were aware of the news and had noted it.