City Hall work: What it will cost

Costings to bring Brechin City Hall up to a modern day standard have eventually been released - suggesting the work would cost in the region of £1,100,000.

For a number of years Councillor Mairi Evans, along with members of the City of Brechin and Area Partnership, claim they have been seeking figures to be released to allow them to find out just how much it would take to get the hall up to an acceptable standard.

These figures have now been published using, they say, a cost list created in September 2009.

Back when the costings were calculated it was thought work to bring the City Hall up to standard would be around £832,460.

This would have come in under the £1 million which had been set aside from the financial plan in 2006 by the SNP administration, by the then convener of corporate services Alex King.

Now, over three years later and with an increase in costs and inflation, this figure stands at an estimated £1,100,000.

And it is not just a handful of people who would like to see the City Hall brought back to standard, as just last year almost 1000 signatures were collected asking Angus Council to “Save Our City Hall”.

Councillor Mairi Evans said: “Bob Myles did not, and I emphasise, did not, put any money in any budget for the upgrade of the city hall and I am quite simply outraged that he could even claim to.

“Jim and I promised to represent the people across this ward. We promised to work hard for them and we promised to make sure that Brechin had its fair share from the council- nothing more or nothing less than what other burghs in the county have and expect.

“More importantly though, we promised to be open and honest with the public with information and in terms of our decision-making.

“Immediately after the election I again requested costings for the city hall.

“And less than two weeks later I received them, after nearly two years of constantly asking and never getting an answer.

“It then transpired that the figures were in fact dated from 2009.

“So not only did Councillor Myles know of these figures for nearly three years, he sat on them for that length of time and let officers of the council take the blame when confronted on their whereabouts.

“These costs were kept from the public under political instruction and it is important the public are aware of this.

“I will not hide information from people in this ward because I know that it is only through open dialogue we have any chance of success over what will be, economically, a difficult term.

“I will also be accountable to the public and will lead officers rather than hide behind them, listening to people and being honest with them in return.

“Only through this do we have a chance of restoring the public’s faith in the council.

“I will work with councillor Myles for the good of this ward but I will not let him perpetuate false information.”

The costings do not include any desired upgrades similar to Webster’s Theatre, nor do they include the purchase of land and/or property to allow deal with the major issue of the emergency accesses and egresses for the building onto land that is not owned by the Council.

Some of the works needing carried out include a complete electrical rewire of the building, an upgrade of heating controls and the extension of central heating to all areas of the building, a full kitchen refurbishment and a general upgrade of all toilets and changing rooms.