Tower Gardens Pavilion

Some questions were raised during the recent community consultation exercise relating to the Pavilion. We have listed these below and have provided answers alongside.  We hope this helps your understanding of the project plan.  

Concern

Response

Where are the facilities for the younger generation?

The Heritage Centre will be designed in a way to appeal to all age groups. Discussions have taken place with groups that provide activities for younger people and they have shown interest in using the function room for clubs/workshops.

The tea room will be suitable for everyone and within Tower Gardens generally there is play equipment for younger people.

Will the iron work be kept?

Can parts of the old structure be included in the heritage centre?

There are plans to use some of the iron work for decorative purposes in the Heritage Centre. The wooden structure is in too poor a condition to be used.

Why can’t the frontage  remain even if the rear of the building is more modern

The front section of the building is beyond repair. Much of this is not original anyway, as sections including windows, fretwork and the interior have been replaced during the life of the building. The sub floor at the front is rotten and the foundations are inadequate.

Will a full photographic record of the old building be made before demolition to be displayed in the heritage centre?

Over 200 photographs have been taken as part of the survey, although these show the building in a very poor state. There are many existing photographs dating back to Victorian times and it is planned to use some of these to tell the story of the Pavilion.

Why can’t the original building be restored?  

The Pavilion is in such a bad way that very little of the original building could be saved. “Restoration” would in essence be rebuilding in the style of the existing building, which in turn would put in place constraints that would prevent the building being sustainable in the future.

Was the building not listed?

English Heritage determined that the building was not of historic significance and therefore rejected the application to have it listed.

Why was the building left to deteriorate?

The building has been in a poor state for many decades. Neither public sector owners or private sector tenants have been able to make the building work and pay for itself.

Will the existing toilets remain at the Main Parade entrance and if not will the toilets in the building be accessible for park users?

There are no plans to remove the public toilets in Tower Gardens. The toilets within the building are primarily aimed at those using the building, but with the enhanced facilities for the disabled open to anyone needing those facilities.

What about parking for the offices/ commercial use?

There will be a small number of on-site car parking places with others using the public car park to the rear.

Art galleries and heritage centres are not popular enough and will not generate much revenue

There is no specific provision for an Art Gallery, but a general exhibition space which could be used for art amongst other uses. The heritage centre is not expected to generate a large income and this has been considered within the overall costings.

The project is just so the Town Council can have new premises

The feasibility study, undertaken by Skegness Partnership, considered the sustainability of having a building on the site. The building will need management and also needs a regular income to cover costs. Skegness Town Council have agreed to provide management of the building and also will provide funding at a similar level to that it pays currently in rents, business rates and service charges. Without this input it would not be possible to create any sustainable facility on the site. Also key is East Lindsey District Council’s agreement to transfer the site and their preference for this to be to an organisation such as Skegness Town Council.

There are already plenty of community spaces

Evidence gathered during the feasibility study shows that existing community space is not meeting the requirements. This may be due to inadequate facilities, prohibitive cost or location.

Would the public be able to use the facilities for events such as Weddings, parties?

Facilities would be available for hire.

How can you ensure it will be used all year round?

The facility will be marketed and events organised and held to attract people outside the main season. Consideration has been given to this and will form part of the business plan.

The project is too risky financially

The risks associated with building a new build are far lower than attempting a restoration. Risks have been considered and will be managed to reduce these wherever possible. Every project carries an element of risk and it is impossible to eliminate these completely.

Would council money be injected into the building if the income is insufficient?

Skegness Town Council already spends money on rent, rates and service charges every year. This money would be used towards the cost of the building, together with rental income from other users. Current projections are that it will take two years to break even and when the Capital funding is available, a contingency sum will be put in place by the Council to cover this gap.

Will jobs be created?

It is anticipated that the building will generate 18 FTE jobs and further jobs in the local economy due to additional economic activity.