This message is from Jodi Gramigni who started the petition "Restore Kensal Rise Library,"
I felt it was essential to provide an update on the developing situation with All Souls College, Oxford, due to inaccurate information being circulated by Thomas Seaman, Estates Bursar and Fellow of All Souls (http://www.all-souls.ox.ac.uk/people.php?personid=61).
He has said that the College is giving the library campaign the space that was requested in our bid. This is incorrect. In addition, their offer of support is a fraction of the over £1m in proceeds that they expect to receive for the sale of the building, and is short term, leaving the library to secure resources to pay for commercial rents in perpetuity. An unsustainable proposition due to the very limited size of the space we are being offered.
Laura Collignon elaborates:
“Just so you all know what this "support" means, All Souls College are selling the building to property developers who will turn it all into flats, except for the old children's section which will be demolished and turned into our new library. That is all we are getting. Oh, and it is suggested that we should pay a market rent for the space we get. And if we don't want to run a library on that basis, apparently they will find someone who will, because we have persuaded them of the importance of a library remaining there!!”
All Souls are requiring the Friends of Kensal Rise Library to negotiate directly with the developer Andrew Gillick of Platinum Revolver Ltd, whose proposal includes partial demolition of the existing building which would require a change of use from Brent Planning (http://www.companiesintheuk.co.uk/ltd/platinum-revolver).
If this is the College's idea of support, god help us if they turn against us…
More details to follow soon.
P.S. on a lighter note, please have a look at http://iamkrlibrary.tumblr.com/ to see portraits of the community users of Kensal Rise Library - supporters of the campaign and our historic community building.
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