THE council offices in Malvern will now be sold off after plans to leave the site were given the green light.

At the last meeting of Malvern Town Council, the decision was taken to sell off the Belle Vue Island building.

This is in advance of the council relocating its offices to a new building to be built in Victoria Park, Malvern Link.

In a section of the meeting where press and the public were exempted, councillors agreed to move ahead with selling the premises and launching a public consultation into what the public wants from the new offices.

Originally proposed back in June this year, the plans for the new building include a new two-storey meeting room to replace the existing pavilion.

This, subject to the consultation, could include a cafe, meeting room for community use and sports facilities.

It is hoped by moving the council's offices, there will be more opportunity for community groups to make use of its facilities.

Around £1.5million was originally earmarked for the project back then, with a fully costed business case resolving that the sale of Belle Vue Terrace is more appropriate than taking out a loan from the Public Works Loan Board.

Back in December 2018, Malvern town councillors formed a task and finish group to look at what should happen to the Victoria Park Pavilion, which used to house a cafe but is now boarded up.

Having agreed that the building was not suitable for refurbishment, councillors initially agreed a new single-storey, high-quality, eco-friendly pavilion to include a café, meeting room, sports changing rooms and public toilets, at a cost of £600,000.

But last November, full council decided to consider a possible larger project with increased scope for community facilities. As the concept and design for this building progressed, members of the task and finish group suggested that as part of this new building, the Town Council offices should be moved and incorporated as a second floor to the building.

At the time, a council spokesman said: "A new building with a café and offices would also provide an onsite presence at the park to help reduce antisocial behaviour, and an eco-friendly building would also help to support the council’s commitment to reduce its carbon emissions in the long term."

The town council, which has six office-based employees, has been based in the former pharmacy in Belle Vue since July 2001.