The Friends of The Scala Arts Centre were delighted to receive this encouraging letter of support from Chris Ruane MP, Vale of Clwyd which read:
HOUSE OF COMMONS LONDON SW1A 0AA
Re: Friends of the Scala, Prestatyn
The Friends of the Scala have been very actively engaged in saving their local cinema for the past six years. Prestatyn is the North Wales home of Pontins Holiday Village, and the northernmost end of the Offa’s Dyke Path, with many thousands of tourists visiting the town every year.
I am presently working with youth groups in the town with the intention of forming an umbrella group to coordinate provision and support for young people, and the organisations who serve them. The Scala has an important role to play in providing a venue for young people to meet and interact with a diverse cross section of other age groups in the town.
The closure of a very popular cinema due to structural defects was a blow to the town, and I admire this group’s efforts to ensure that their dream of having a new cinema and arts centre built in the centre of town becomes a reality.
This high profile project has a key role to play in High Street regeneration, and I hope that the £1.5 million grant from the National Assembly for Wales will help to ensure the success of this eagerly awaited venture.
Chris Ruane MP
The original letter from Chris Ruane MP can be viewed here in the popular PDF format:-
Friends of the Scala worked very close with Prestatyn and District Environment Association on Friday 20th, with a street collection organised by the PDEA. Its was a great day and £716.56 was collected on behalf of the friends.
I would like to thank all the members of both groups and the residents of the local area who came out to help collect, even the rain held off for us it was all in our favor.
Through the hard work and effort of everyone involved this will be a nice boost towards funds for the running of the group and our goal of the new Scala development.
I would also like to thank Sherry Edwards for her hard work and dedication on the day and the days leading up to the event, and the Neuadd y Brenin- Kings Hall managment committee for their kind use of the hall and facilities as a central meeting point for collections and counting.
The people of Prestatyn have been given two months to prove that they can make the Scala work as a community project.
Today (Tuesday) Denbighshire County Council unanimously decided to give Prestatyn Town Council and residents until November to prove that they can take forward the project to create a community arts centre at the former town centre cinema.
The decision came following a thorough debate on the Capital Plan in which nearly twenty members spoke and which resulted in the following unanimous decisions:
1. In view of information from the Capital Task Group, to defer a decision on the Scala to the Council meeting in November, to allow the opportunity for Prestatyn Town Council and residents to take the project forward. Pending that decision, the allocation previously made for this project should be moved to an unallocated reserve;
2. The Ruthin Craft Centre project should continue subject to the same condition as the current Council decision of the tender being within budget;
3. Past allocations made for community capital projects that lapse, in line with the Cabinet’s decision in July 2006, should be ring-fenced for reallocation to other community capital projects, with the normal allocation for these projects being reviewed annually before bids are invited;
4. The Capital Task Group should continue, with a remit to review the current procedures surrounding the capital plan and secondly to consider the medium term capital planning requirements.
5. Future strategic planning should include town strategies and encompass the rural strategy being developed, as well as taking account of the Vision, Spatial Plan and the LDP.
The report of the Capital Task Group was introduced by the Chief Executive, Ian Miller, who told councillors that references to “a black hole” and “the Rhuddlan debt” were irresponsible, inappropriate and inaccurate.
The Council has not committed itself to proceeding with projects for which funding is not in place. However, all capital resources have been allocated for the next three years. The focus for the Council’s debate was whether it should create additional flexibility within the capital plan over the next three years, in addition to the allocation that had already been made for contingencies.