Answering some FAQs concerning the Weekly News article

So it’s been a manic 24hrs since the news broke via Haverhill Weekly News about our proposed plans concerning the Haverhill Corn Exchange yesterday morning. Quite rightly, there has been much discussion about what we are hoping to do as a project and what we plan for the renovation. Personally, it’s nice to see that there are so many people with an active interest in the building. I hope that we can club together to be able to ensure the building can be saved.

I’ve tried to be active on Facebook groups and forums to help answer the great questions that people have – but certain valid concerns kept popping up, so decided it might be helpful to also answer them here. I’ve mainly be checking Haverhill UK, Haverhill #Community and Haverhill Community Memories Past and Present on Facebook, plus the Haverhill-UK message boards. So if you have been posting on other discussion platforms, then I’m sorry I haven’t seen it. Please comment below a link so I am able to join the discussions there too.

Dennis B via HaverhillUK, Facebook

I wonder what timescale is envisaged?

I’m hoping that we can work within a 3 – 4yr period. That’s mainly allowing for about 12 months working out the finer details with planning dept. But I cannot stress it enough that it all depends on the local community involvement and fundraising.

Lesley S via Haverhill Community Memories Past and Present, Facebook

Hoping it was gonna be made into a museum. Lot of history about Haverhill before the last of it gets demolished.

Jayy via Haverhill-UK message boards

Interesting idea… with my love for local history i have always wanted to see this magnificent Haverhill building as a heritage centre and with a population of almost 30,000 Haverhill deserves such a facility. Sadly i suspect the heritage idea died a death for a number of reasons and pure speculation on my part would be: complete lack of interest and understanding of what could be achieved from Town Councillors. The Town Council said they would look at a business plan but it was more than obvious they could not see the vision and certainly did not have any passion. More speculation on my part is Haverhill history group did not seem interested  ;( The history group is a registered charity and even has a level of museum status. Haverhill history group has missed the biggest chance they ever had… The corn exchange could have been Haverhills Guildhall project. Perhaps TC should kick them out the arts centre because the space is needed for council meetings.  :o

Obviously the heritage centre would be an amazing idea, and was seriously discussed with The History Group as a feasible option for the build for quite some time. But they decided after much discussion that they did not wish to move from where they are currently in the Arts Centre – which is fair enough.

All your other speculation concerning Town Councillors and business plans is before my time I’m afraid, so I’m unable to help you there.

Jerry D via HaverhillUK, Facebook

Isn’t this a similar type of project that has been tried many times , funded by various different agency’s in the last decade ? how many times has this type of thing been run from the Cangle Junction , i believe we had the “Face ” of Haverhill, the Cangle film Project , the local radio project, remember the ” Art ” that pooped up all over town ?, the Graffiti projects.The Cangle Junction was equipped with all the facilities for exactly this type of project. Why cant that be used again?. £1 .5 million is an incredible amount of money that could be put to better use for the community.

Well you’d have to speak to the Haverhill Town Council concerning those projects Jerry. From memory that face project (Haverhill 2000?!) was 14yrs ago. Around the same time, like you have mentioned Town Council launched “Multiarts” which was, in my personal view, a wasted opportunity – but you’re right to say it disappeared due to lack of funding.

The other projects you mentioned were community groups coming together (from what I gathered) as a hobby more than anything else, and once again from memory, didn’t really have official body within the town behind them / supporting them. But I maybe wrong about that.

The equipment from all these projects was purchased, from memory greatly under-used and now outdated. While your points are valid, and I do know a few of the people who were involved in a hand full of projects you have mentioned above, I nor Pixelated Projects have any affiliation with them. You would need to speak to the people at Haverhill Arts Centre and/or Haverhill Town Council concerning your views.

Carl M via Haverhill #Community, Facebook

It’s superb! What a great way to bring an old building to life. £1.5m is a whole chunk of money, but spread across many, it’s not very much. And everyone can get involved in this too.

Diana A via Haverhill #Community, Facebook

I’m not sure about this. Be lovely to see the building up and running, but not sure where the 1.5million will come from? Also would have been lovely to have the building used for a more heritage type project, but I know that was also unlikely due to costs. If there was 1.5 million kicking around I’d rather see it invested in schools to get the facilities there. I would imagine getting the building into a fit state of repair will take a large chunk of that money, which doesn’t seem in line with the project as a whole. Having said all that, it would be great to see the building restored and if the project works it’s can’t be a bad thing.

Kirk via HaverhillUK, Facebook

Makes you wonder what the charity could do with 1.5 million pounds

Put simply, a lot! A vast majority of that budget is to actually do the desperately necessary work to the building itself. A surprisingly small amount of that total is for the specialised equipment needed after the renovation project.

Amazingly, if everyone in Haverhill and Surrounding area all donated £50 – the whole project would be paid for. No need for any grants, lottery funding or match-funding. Obviously, the likelihood of that happening is tiny. But if we can all club together and contribute what we can, then are more likely to succeed when applying for grants and lottery funding later on.

Sue L via HaverhillUK, Facebook

I am still keen to see Highpoint prison involved and for the project to assist in the rehabilitation of offenders, either with the commitment of D-Cat workers or live projects like graphic design from inside the prison.

Several people had mentioned about the possible partnership with HMP Highpoint, which I am equally very eager to continue with, if the offer is still available. But I am unclear about who would be the person to approach, how that would all work, and what skills would be on offer from them – need some catching up on that point to be honest.

Jerry D via HaverhillUK, Facebook

why hasn’t it been set up in the new science park which has the ” Business ” Facilities to accommodate this type of thing .The Corn exchange is part of the the town , it wasnt built to encompass other parts of the UK and Europe, its for the people of Haverhill.Its part of the towns heritage

Of course you’re right to suggest a purpose built building for our project would be better as the design can be tailored for the needs of the project, however it’s a situation where someone needs to take on the enormous challenge of renovating the Corn Exchange. The situation for the building is looking dodgy today, as it stands. If there was another project in Haverhill that would be better suited to take on the building, renovate it, and run it – then I’d quite happily bow out and support them. But unfortunately, there isn’t.

I hope that helps cover the basics of what we have planned. But do feel free to comment below if you have any further questions – I’d be happy to answer as much as I can.

Have a good weekend!

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