We have been waiting for the completion of the major “options” study for the future of Ashton Court Mansion, being carried out by consultants Purcell. This study was originally commissioned by Bristol City Council and Historic England. It was put in abeyance late in 2013, but Purcell were re commissioned earlier this year with the brief to complete the work.
We can now report that the Purcell Study is nearly finished! We understand that an initial draft has been delivered to the City Council and comments and feedback are awaited.
We don’t have a date for the very final completion of the Study – nor do we have a date when it will be made public and we will be able to pore over its findings. We will continue to press for both.
Of course, the Study is only the start of the really hard work, the challenge of turning its findings into reality and of finding a sustainable solution for the future of the Mansion. What will happen next?
- Bristol City Council will assess the draft report, make comments, hopefully leading to its completion and publication.
- The City Council may well decide to “market” the Mansion in order to see if there is any serious private sector investment interest.
What are our plans?
We intend to make the case for a community-based future for Ashton Court Mansion. We believe that it should be regenerated as a “People’s Palace” for the benefit of all Bristolians. It was purchased some 60 years ago by the Council and should remain in public ownership and use. We are currently drafting a leaflet setting out our initial plans.
We are also in the initial stages of planning a major event – probably early in the New Year (a year after our initial public meeting in Ashton Court Mansion), the objective being to raise the profile of the challenges facing the Mansion and to launch our bid for a community-based bid. Timing will depend on the publication of the Purcell Study.
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Chair of the Bristol Civic Society