Eden District Council plan on move to Voreda House
EDC have bought Voreda House from the NHS in order to move all EDC services onto one site and to release the Grade II* listed Town Hall and Mansion House for other uses. Voreda House is just along the road from the Town Hall so still in the heart of Penrith.
"A single site has been on the council radar for 12 to 15 years. The two existing buildings are not fit for purpose," said Virginia Taylor, LibDem leader of EDC. "Attempts have been made but the buildings cannot be made more accessible. They cost a fortune to heat and emit ludicrous amounts of carbon."
There have been complaints from various sources that continuing with the 'One site' plan is a waste of money because there are not proposals for Unitary authorities in Cumbria , which would lead to the abolition of Eden District Council. However Mrs Taylor said: "This is exactly the reason we need it. We need local government services and jobs in Penrith. A new authority will want to set up a service centre in a good building."
A Unitary Authority would have no requirement to provide services from a building in Penrith and inheriting old and inaccessible offices would be an excellent reason not to base any of the services in Eden.
By proposing to refurbish Voreda House to Passivhaus standards EDC has been conditionally awarded a grant of £856,000 to transform to a zero carbon public service hub. The original budget allowed by EDC in 2015 under a Tory council for the whole 'One site' project was £2.3million and it is understood that the purchase and refurbishment of Voreda has been projected to be within the original budget even without this additional grant.
Hence EDC believe this project is a good use of council funds and the best chance of keeping council related jobs within Eden.
The unrefurbished Voreda House
Link below for the new look for Voreda!