Community concerns over the future use of Derry’s St Columb’s Hall were raised during a recent public meeting.
Organised by veteran Derry activist Dermie McClenaghan, the meeting at Sandinos Bar attracted more than 50 concerned local citizens.
The historic city centre building has been the subject of much press attention in recent weeks as the Derry Diocese consider proposals for its future use.
Mr McClenaghan says that the discussion resulted in several key points regarding the future of the hall being outlined. Primarily, that the history of the hall and its link to the local community must be recognised, particularly considering the widespread fears over how a potential leaseholder or developer might seek to change it.
Those in attendance at the meeting also questioned the possibility of any leaseholder or developer making a profit from the hall, as it is widely felt that the hall is the property of the people of Derry. The possibility of Derry City Council taking control of St. Columb’s Hall was also discussed.
Meanwhile, a spokesperson for Derry City Council denied rumours that the local authority is interested in taking over St. Columb’s Hall. “The matter of the Hall license has not been considered by Council and any such proposal would have to be discussed and approved by elected members.”