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Coronavirus in Moray: Elgin Town Hall gets £35k lockdown grant


By Alistair Whitfield

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This photo was taken back in 2018, and shows the transfer of Elgin Town from Moray Council.
Pictured are Andrew Gray, Moray Council's Community Asset Transfer Co-ordinator (Front Left) and Mike Devenney, Chair of the Board (Front Right) along with (Left to Right) Graham Leadbitter, Donald Squair, Janice Hyndman, Angus Whitton, Neil Millward, Mark Conti and Linda Marquardt.
Picture: Daniel Forsyth.
This photo was taken back in 2018, and shows the transfer of Elgin Town from Moray Council. Pictured are Andrew Gray, Moray Council's Community Asset Transfer Co-ordinator (Front Left) and Mike Devenney, Chair of the Board (Front Right) along with (Left to Right) Graham Leadbitter, Donald Squair, Janice Hyndman, Angus Whitton, Neil Millward, Mark Conti and Linda Marquardt. Picture: Daniel Forsyth.

Elgin Town Hall has been given a £35,000 grant to help see it through the period while its doors must remain shut.

The venue has been given the cash by the Third Sector Resilience Fund to cover running costs.

The grant is backdated to the start of March and runs for four months until the beginning of July.

Elgin Town Hall for the Community took over control of the building from Moray Council in August 2018.

Since that date the not-for-profit organisation, which operates with just two paid staff, has since managed to attract numerous popular acts to Moray.

Mike Devenney, the chairman of Elgin Town Hall for the Community, praised the quick response of the fund, which is run by Firstport, Social Investment Scotland and the Corra Foundation.

He said: "As has been the case with many charities across Moray, the unforeseen onset of the impact of the coronavirus stopped all activities at the town hall in their tracks in mid-March.

"Given that the vast majority of our income flows from tickets sales for our increasingly popular events, the impact on our funding was immediate.

"And it will not improve until the public can start to visit the hall again in large numbers.

"The panel were incredibly quick in responding to our request and have offered us funding that will we will utilise through to the end of June.

"This grant will make all the difference to us over that period of time, although we do realise that we are likely to face a period of uncertainty that will extend beyond then."

Just days before the coronavirus crisis hit the region Elgin Town Hall for the Community agreed to take on a five-year lease of the building.

However, the council has willingly agreed to void that agreement.

Elgin Town Hall for the Community will instead continue to lease the building on a short-term basis, paying a peppercorn rent.


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