Following pressure on Bradford Council, Imran has secured the transfer of the Eccleshill Mechanics Institute from Bradford Council to the Eccleshill Community Association and the local community on a long-term 99-year lease.
As the home of the Eccleshill Community Association who provide a wide range of services and activities for the local community, the 19th century Mechanics Institute, located at the top of Eccleshill Village acts as the Association’s hub and is key to their work. However, unlike many similar organisations who either own or have long-term leases on their home, the Mechanic’s Institute is let to the Association by its owners, Bradford Council, on a short-term lease, putting the long-term prospects of the Association in doubt.
In an attempt to secure their future, the Directors of the Eccleshill Community Association and their Chair, Terry Pearson, entered negotiations with Bradford Council in early 2018 to transfer the Mechanics Institute to the Association through a Community Asset Transfer that allows the transfer of the management and/or ownership of public land and buildings to achieve a local social, economic or environmental benefit. Yet, despite the support for these plans, progress towards signing an agreement stalled and remained stagnant with no significant progress from May 2019.
However, following a meeting with the Chair of the Eccleshill Community Association to discuss the future of the Mechanics Institute and negotiations with Bradford Council, Imran broke the yearlong deadlock in a meeting with the Council’s Executive Committee which saw them agree to proceed with a 99 year lease of the Mechanics Institute to the Association.
Speaking on the Community Asset Transfer of the Eccleshill Mechanics Institute, Imran said:
“The Mechanics Institute up in Eccleshill Village and the Eccleshill Community Association play an important role in the local community and are a key part of local life, setting the standard for community work across Bradford and the region, and I am pleased that Bradford Council have agreed to listen, end the deadlock and finalise the transfer of the building on such long lease for the whole community’s benefit.
“Community organisations are the lifeblood of the areas they serve, but sadly, many have had to close their doors over recent years. However, I hope that with his long-term lease, Terry and the Eccleshill Community Association now have the certainty that they need to expand the services and activities that they provide, and I look forward to visiting them again soon to see the work that they do.”