VIDEO: Cheltenham’s Municipal Offices up for sale part 2
By Sarah Wood | 8th September 2023
As Cheltenham Borough Council's iconic Municipal Offices goes on the market, Punchline-Gloucester.com has been having a tour behind the scenes.
Cllr Rowena Hay, leader of the council, and Paul Jones, executive director of finance, assets and regeneration, took Mark Owen, Punchline-Gloucester.com editor, on a tour of the basement, the lower basement and the first floor of the historic building.
This is the second video of three that we're releasing as we travel the different floors of the building. Check out part 1 here and come back for part 3 on Monday (September 11).
The building has been home to the council since 1914. Over the years, a lot of paperwork has been produced, much of which is stored in the council's archive in the lower basement of the Municipal Offices.
Paul Jones said: "My predecessors didn't have computers, so obviously all the accounts would have been done with quill pens and ledger books. Some of those are still housed within these archives.
"Moving forward, there are some elements that will still need to be digitalised."
But what will the council do with the thousands of boxes when it moves?
Paul Jones continued: "Some of it will be destroyed under our retention policy, some of it will have historical importance and will probably need to be stored off site in the future."
The first floor of the building is home to some of the council's key players. Cllr Rowena Hay has her office up there, with plenty of space for informal meetings with the cabinet.
With its high ceilings, the first floor is also where some of the building's most interesting architectural details can be found.
Cllr Rowena Hay said: "This architrave that you can see is really important. When it comes to actually selling, this is a listed building and there are some anomalies that you wouldn't really think about, that anybody who buys it will need to know about."
The council is committed to selling to a developer which will retain the Grade II listed building's historic character for the future of the town.
Cheltenham Borough Council voted in July to put the Municipal Offices on the market. The council has been based at the 60,000 sq ft building on the Promenade for over 100 years, but the offices are no longer fit for purpose.
With the move towards hybrid working arrangements, the offices are too big for the council's needs. The carbon footprint is considerable, and the building is not accessible for people with mobility requirements.
Come back on Monday (September 11) for the final part of Punchline-Gloucester.com's exclusive tour of the historic building.
Businesses interested in finding out more about the sale of the historic Municipal Offices should contact Abi Marshall, development manager, at Cheltenham Borough Council.
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