In February Portobello Community Council ran a short consultation to ascertain feelings toward two proposals for bringing Portobello Town Hall back into use.
The consultation attracted a reasonably limited number of responses – 143. A brief summary follows, along with full anonymised results attached.
People who commented in favour of this proposal are of the view that his track record is strong, that the outline idea is sound and that a ballet school would be a good addition to Porty if it provides a way forward for CEC vis-a-vis the building, as well as ancillary benefits of investment, increased footfall, etc
People who were neutral were more cautious about the proposal, being less familiar with PS’s track record and raise concerns about the lack of consultation and engagement with the community to date and the lack of detail in the proposal regarding both the business plan and the community access.
People against the proposal feel PS is ’empire building’, is not interested in the community and a ballet school would be ‘elitist’ and restrict access for other community uses. There is a sense amongst those against the bid that the community would ‘lose’ the town hall.
People who commented in support of the PC proposal feel it would be strong on the community angle, that the community would ‘retain’ the Town Hall and that the high level of engagement and consultation demonstrated by the proposal would be the best way to manage the Town Hall going forward
People who were neutral were concerned about the commercial viability of the proposal and the need for ongoing access to public money and the similarity of the proposal to other venues in Porty. Concern that it may be vulnerable to a decline in enthusiasm of volunteers.
Those who commented against the proposals that there was a lack of a clear vision, that Porty was seeking to hog more than its fair share of Community Right to Buy Cash and that the PC proposal was another example of the passing of a public asset in the hands of a middle class clique.