Plans for the development of a new community facility in Raglan have successfully passed another key milestone with the agreement by Monmouthshire County Council to transfer the site of the now-closed junior school to the Raglan Village Hall Association (RVHA).

This follows 18 months of work during which Monmouthshire County Council and the RVHA established a jointly-chaired strategic working group, with representatives of the community of Raglan, to better understand the needs of the community, and how to provide the best solution for the village and its surrounding ward.

A consultation exercise in November 2014 carried out by the RVHA established that there was widespread support for the construction of a new community facility on the former Raglan Junior School site, which has now been vacated following the successful opening of the new primary school in Raglan.

Over the past year the strategic working group has met regularly to look at a variety of options, which has resulted in the agreement by Monmouthshire County Council that the land would be transferred to the RVHA.

Councillor Phil Murphy, cabinet member with responsibility for estates said: “The council acknowledges that a community the size of Raglan needs a suitable centre for community activities so we’re pleased to transfer the former junior school site to RVHA.  This places them in a position to develop a local infrastructure designed to meet the needs of the village and aid the funding application.”

The new community facility is expected to cost £900,000 and RVHA Chair Andrew Johnson was also delighted to hear recently that a bid to the BIG Lottery has reached Stage 2 of the application, meaning that the likelihood of building the facility is a step nearer.  Stage 2 BIG Lottery funding submissions have to be completed within six months and require considerable detail including a full needs analysis, detailed planning permission, a business plan, and clear indicators to measure the likely success of the project.

Andrew said: “Our next consultation exercise will run from Monday 26th October until Monday 9th November and we encourage people to participate so that we can capture the needs of our community, which will help us in our funding applications to BIG Lottery and other potential funders.  We hope that all sectors of the community – individuals, groups and businesses – will take part and ensure that we successfully fund and design a community facility that will be accessible to all.”

At the cabinet meeting in July Council Leader Peter Fox said: “We wish them (RVHA) well with their bid.”

The RVHA meets in the Old Church School on the third Wednesday each month at 7.30pm with meetings open to all.  For further information contact Andrew Johnson on 01291 690072.