City council seeks operator for Preston Guild Hall
Preston City Council has announced a call out for proposals for a land deal, lease arrangement for Preston Guild Hall.
Seeking an operator for the Guild Hall, including the Charter Theatre, Grand Hall, offices and ground floor shops, Preston City Council aims to use this competitive process to find the most economically advantageous solution for the future of the venue.
Looking for an organisation with a strong track record and reputation, the council wants an operator who is ready and able to revitalise the Guild Hall.
Leader of Preston City Council, Cllr Matthew Brown said: “I am really pleased we are already in the position to look to the future of the Guild Hall.
“This is a crucial next step and while we will follow all necessary due processes and protocol, we must keep moving forward at pace.
“Keeping the venue empty is not to anyone’s advantage and we are acutely aware that entertainment programmes and the like require a significant lead-in time.
“This is a very different proposition to the one we took to market five years ago, because times have changed and we have learned from experience.”
He added: We recognise the Guild Hall’s importance to the city and believe that the council has a key role in determining its future. We will ensure we are a key stakeholder in the process going forward.
“I look forward to seeing formal proposals from organisations with the experience and financial capacity to take a venue of this size on and make it thrive.”
The council is considering bearing maintenance costs as part of the lease, but details have yet to be decided, although the length of the lease is expected to be up to 30 years.
The decision to proceed with a lease arrangement with a given operator will be made by full council. The timetable is to be confirmed, but the deadline for proposals is noon, July 15.
Preston Guild Hall is home to a 2,750-capacity Grand Hall and 716-capacity Charter Theatre.