Torbay Council has appointed People’s Parkfield CIC (Community Interest Company) to take over the lease of Parkfield House and the surrounding grounds.
The decision comes after the council invited the local Voluntary, Community, and Social Enterprise sector to submit proposals that would bring Parkfield back into use for the benefit of Torbay residents.
People’s Parkfield CIC is made up of 17 Community Partner organisations.
The successful bid to take over Parkfield was coordinated by the Paignton Town Centre and Preston Community Partnership together with Torbay Community Development Trust and Local Spark Torbay.
Over the coming weeks, People’s Parkfield CIC will be finalising legal and governance structures before formally taking over responsibility of the site from 1 April 2023. After which they will be reaching out to the community, including local businesses for people with skills and time to get involved in bringing the new vision for Parkfield to life.
Under the new 25-year lease agreement which sees the council support, rather than control the site, People’s Parkfield CIC will be responsible for developing Parkfield into a community resource.
The People’s Parkfield bid was selected after the innovative collaborative proposal demonstrated how it would deliver positive outcomes for Torbay residents of all ages, particularly children and young people.
Cllr Darren Cowell, Deputy Leader of Torbay Council, said; “In 2019 we set out a commitment to working differently with our communities by being a council that supports, enables, and empowers people and organisations. People’s Parkfield CIC is a fantastic example of collaborative working to ensure this Asset of Community Value, is managed by the community for the community.”
Cllr Swithin Long, Cabinet Member for Economic Regeneration, Tourism and Housing for Torbay Council said; “I recently met with some of the key partners of People’s Parkfield CIC to hear about their vision and plans. This is an incredibly exciting time for this important community hub and I’m keen to see how Parkfield develops and grows over the coming months and years.”
Chris Gunson on behalf of People’s Parkfield Steering Group, said; “We worked incredibly hard over the summer of 2022 to put together a very strong plan which will make Parkfield a fantastic resource for the people of Paignton and Torbay. We are excited to develop Parkfield into a community space in the heart of Paignton, for all generations to thrive and grow, where opportunities flourish, where challenges are overcome, and friendships made.”
Parkfield House is a Grade II listed Victoria villa with 20 rooms and many well-preserved original features. People’s Parkfield CIC will be managing the house, the walled garden, the stable block, BMX track, skateboard park and the surrounding woodland and grounds.
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