The partnership consisting of Hastings Voluntary Action (HVA), Age UK East Sussex, Hastings and St Leonards Seniors Forum and Hastings Old Town Residents Association (HOTRA) has been working hard to return the Isabel Blackman Centre into community hands serving older people and the wider community. Although, the entire process has some way to go we are delighted to announce that: -
• A fundraising campaign where donations from individuals, groups and charitable trusts has successfully raised sufficient funds to purchase the building.
• A structural survey has been completed to illustrate the condition of the building and any capital works needed to bring it back into use.
• A series of negotiations with East Sussex County Council have been concluded and an agreement has been reached on final price and the terms on which the building could be sold.
• A new legal structure (IBC- In perpetuity) has been created which will hold, develop and manage the building ensuring that its future is locally controlled HVA, HOTRA, the Seniors Forum and Age UK East Sussex are the founder directors. The company has been created and its registration with the Charities Commission has been submitted.
• A transition planning group has begun work to look at how the building could be made COVID safe and a timeline within which it could be available to local groups.
• Solicitors have been appointed to conclude the acquisition of IBC
• Like the purchase of any property – there is still much to be done. We are not there yet but we did feel we had reached a point where we could share some potentially exciting news with those who have supported this endeavour.
The Board of Trustees of Isabel Blackman Centre in Perpetuity- a Company Limited by guarantee. Charitable status pending.
Contact for further enquiries: - Ruairi McCourt, Project Volunteer- 07850 987 123