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Clubhouse Latest: Where we are with the rebuild



The CRGT is pleased to announce that a meeting on July 9 with the new Elmbridge BC administration has been very positive in moving plans forward for the new improved Claygate Community Clubhouse.

Negotiations over the redesign and funding for the enhanced Community Clubhouse had been delayed in part due to the council elections in May where a new leadership team had to be formed and also due to new proposals by the CGRT to:

> Take over management of the build on behalf of EBC.

> Incorporating the CRGT’s status into a charitable company to safeguard against any personal financial liability to CRGT trustees.

At the the meeting with the new leader of EBC, Cllr Tim Oliver, the CRGT put forward their high level costings with the new administration. Once these have been verified, the Trust will have permission to put the redesign out to tender and source alternative bids to the council’s contractors.

Helen Maguire, CRGT chair, says: “This has been a major step forward for the CRGT. The new leadership team has been very encouraging about fostering the energy and enthusiasm of a community that has fundraised so hard for an improved clubhouse.

“Reinstating the old design was not an option and we are working hard behind the scenes in partnership with EBC to ensure that we get the right deal for everybody.”

The enhanced clubhouse improvements will include removing flat roofs to avoid some of the security challenges from the previous design, disabled access, a new first floor community space and a larger kitchen area to accommodate the demand for a café on the recreation ground.

Claygate Community Clubhouse Timeline

Nov 2016: Fire damages original clubhouse building.

Dec 2016: Designs for an enhanced Clubhouse submitted to EBC.

Feb 2017: CRGT informed it needs to raise £190,000 by 21st August 2017 if it wants to move forwards with enhanced design.

Feb 2017: The CRGT and the Claygate community rally together and begin a major fundraising programme for a new enhanced design, which will fund the gap between the insurance payout and the costs of a new improved building.

July 2017: More than £190K is raised through grants, events, and private donations.

Sept 2017: EBC Cabinet meeting reveals clubhouse was underinsured and will meet estimated shortfall up to £90,000 with £10,000 towards fixtures and fittings. Design changes requested by Claygate Cricket Club (bar moved downstairs) presented to EBC.

Nov 2017: CRGT meets EBC contracted builders Kier. CRGT is asked by EBC to fund an additional £51,000 for the original enhanced design. CRGT raised the extra funds bringing the total raised to £241,000

Dec 2017: EBC agree in principle to handover financial management of the rebuild to the CRGT.

Mar 2018: Cabinet meeting 14 March. Council reveals there is now a 34 per cent reduction in the Clubhouse insurance settlement. EBC agrees to meet the shortfall, up to a maximum of £300,000.

The CRGT also requests to be incorporated into a charitable company – in its current status any financial liability e.g. building contracts would personally fall upon the trustees. A change in status would avoid this.

May 2018 Elmbridge Borough Council Elections. With no political party winning an outright majority, EBC goes into a state of ‘purdah’. and negotiations begin about who will form the next administration. The council’s CEO is given executive powers to make decisions in the interim. Two weeks later Conservative Councillor Tim Oliver was elected as Leader of EBC.

9 July 2018 CRGT’s first meeting with the new EBC administration.

About the CRGT:

The Claygate Recreation Ground Trust (CRGT) was set up in 1998 to manage and preserve Claygate’s Recreation Ground, adjacent woodland and clubhouse in an initiative set up between Elmbridge Borough Council (EBC) and the community of Claygate, initiated by the late Cllr Hugh Ashton.​

The CRGT is a registered charity (number 1067839) and is responsible for managing the finances of the trust and planning and implementing continuous improvements so that the recreation ground remains a focal point for the whole community.

The CRGT is made up of 7 locally elected trustees and 9 representatives from the following organisations; Elmbridge Borough Council, Claygate Parish Council, Claygate Royals Football Club, Claygate Cricket Club, Claygate Primary School, Claygate Flower & Village Show, Claygate Village Association, Claygate Youth Club, Holy Trinity Church.

The CRGT receives a yearly grant of £33,230 from EBC to run and implement continuous improvements on the recreation ground. The CRGT also relies on funds, charitable foundations and other grant sources to continue its work helping fund a number programmes including new pedestrian paths, wood clearance, improved drainage and the building of a Multi Use Games Area.

For more information: Damian Ross, Helen Maguire