Hermitage Green transferred by West Berkshire Council to parish for 75 years
HERMITAGE'S village green has been leased to the parish council for a period of 75 years.
The decision was made by West Berkshire Council on April 30.
Hermitage Green currently features extensive parkland, as well as a children's play area.
It was transferred to West Berkshire Council in 2010, in order that it could be developed for housing.
In March 2020, Hermitage Parish Council made a formal request to the district council for the devolution of the green to it.
This would invest it with exclusive planning and maintenance rights.
A document compiled by officers at West Berkshire Council recommended that the parish's requests for a lease be approved.
The report stated that a secure lease could safeguard the future of the green as a public facility.
The parish council needs this security due to the essential maintenance the grounds require.
Council officers claimed that a new agreement would allow it to upgrade the outdated equipment in the green's playground.
They said: "Hermitage Parish Council are best placed to manage Hermitage Green in perpetuity as they can engage with a local contractor to provide more tailored maintenance which better meets the needs of the local community.
"Future use of the land as a recreational open space, protected from development, can be ensured by a simple clause inserted in the lease which restricts its use for purposes other than open space and children's play.
"This proposal offers an opportunity for West Berkshire Council to support the devolution agenda and place this open space and playground asset at the appropriate level of government to ensure that they are maintained appropriately and continue to meet the requirements of the local community into the future."