Council demands repairs to historic Leas Pavilion

Folkestone & Hythe District Council has given the owners of the Leas Pavilion two months to carry out repairs to the listed building - or risk being forced to sell.


The Council has issued a legal repairs notice to Churchgate detailing six pages of work that is necessary to protect the building and preserve it for the future.

If it is not completed by the deadline, the Council can ask the Secretary of State to issue a compulsory purchase order, meaning it could buy the building.

The Leas Pavilion is a hugely important heritage asset to the district and we have tried to work with the owners to safeguard it and stop it falling into a worse state of repair.
This repairs notice signals our determination to take all steps permitted by law to protect the building and we will continue to take action until the situation is resolved. Cllr David Monk, Leader of Folkestone & Hythe District Council

The former Edwardian tearoom and theatre has been empty since 2008, and planning permission was previously granted for a development including flats and a gym. But that has since expired and no new plans have been submitted by the owners.

The Victorian Society and Save Britain's Heritage have both included the pavilion in a list of buildings that are 'at risk' nationally. Folkestone & Hythe District Council has set aside money to carry out repairs to the building if the owners fail to do so.

We understand what the Leas Pavilion means to our residents and we share their desire for something to be done to protect it.
We also feel the local community's frustration that there is no quick fix.
The fact that Folkestone & Hythe District Council has taken the unprecedented step of issuing a repairs notice illustrates our commitment to protecting the building and preserving it for the future. Cllr David Monk

The list of repairs includes propping and supports to stabilise the structure, repairing the roof and preserving historic features such as bricks and windows. It also requires the owners to provide detailed drawings of the building, and to clean and repair decorative ironwork such as stairs and railings.

Published on 13 March 2019