Save our scout hut

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Hi all,

It is with great sadness I regret to advise that with effect from April 2021 (or earlier) we will be no longer meeting at our head quarters in Clayhall Road. We will also loose control of the building and all the facilities for Scouting purposes.

We have been in negotiations with the St Mary’s Church Alverstoke Parochial Church Council (PCC) and regret the annual rent of £15,000 per annum, set by the PCC means we can physically not afford the premises or the buildings.

What saddens me more is the building was fund raised by Gosport Scouting at a cost of around £60,000 having obtained a 25 year lease for the land upon which it is sited from the Alverstoke PCC.  Under the Landlord and Tenant Act, on the expiry of the lease ownership of the Scout funded building transferred to the Landlord, Alverstoke PCC.

As a way ahead, and in order to be able to continue Scouting to remain control of the building whilst investigations continued, we agreed a three year licence of occupation with the PCC. Under this licence we are required to pay an annual rent of £1,500 plus 20% of all lettings. This licence is scheduled to expire:

1.    April 12th 2021

2.    Termination by either party at 3 months written notice

3.    Reaching a new lease agreement or the purchase of the site

4.    Breach of terms of the licence conditions

We have tried various surveyors and The PCC are sticking with the valuations provided by their Surveyor.

The PCC are not willing to accept the information provided by us regarding the ability to sell or lease to a closely aligned charity as per the Charities Commission Rules for less than the market value.

There are options presented are:-

1.    Lease of the DHQ site for £15,000 per annum (included a charity based reduction) 

2.    Sale of the whole site in the region of £400,000 to £500,000

None are financially viable.

As scouting volunteers we have attempted to try and resolve the lease issue but to no avail.

What saddens me most of all is that this will affect the provision of Scouting in Gosport and with a particular impact to Gosport Explorers Scouts which our district team have volunteered their spare time in providing and supporting our local community.

If you are able to assist and help us in promoting this please get in contact and perhaps with the support of the community we can overturn this decision which will affect the youth of our community.

Kind Regards

Robin 

(Gosport District Explorer Scout Commissioner)