FOI Request re: Income Derived from HTH – Update

Many weeks ago HTHAS decided to test Haringey’s claim that one of the main reasons for the sell-off was that any council facing government cuts on the scale confronting Haringey cannot afford to spend money on keeping the Town Hall Open. It is a mantra that they have been repeating for eighteen months and is one of the fundamental justifications they give for the now almost signed, sealed and delivered disposal to FEC.

Without a doubt it is true that the cuts are brutal and that the £350k figure it costs Haringey to run the building is reasonably accurate.

But how much income do they receive (rent, box office cut, antenna rental, film and TV shoots) that goes towards offsetting this £7 000 a week spend?

We have had a reply to our FOI and here is the answer: FOI Request re: Income from Hornsey Town Hall

So, on the basis that they have to ask a 3rd party how much money they make from activity in Hornsey Town Hall (don’t they know?), Haringey have so far decided not to tell you, dear reader, how deep you actually have to dig into your pocket to keep the dear old Town Hall open! Could it be that the income/expenditure equation nearly balances? Or that they are perhaps even making money?

If the claim, made repeatedly at Overview and Scrutiny and at Cabinet, proves to be false, can we all expect a new year retraction and apology?

Please please please – keep the pressure up on them and keep writing with questions, requests for justifications and begging them to pause the sale (Crouch End Councillors)

This battle to save this North London jewel and the heart of Crouch End, to provide social housing, small business spaces, and a proper arts centre is not over and the Appreciation Society will continue campaigning to the end.

We hope you’re with us.

From the Appreciation Society  …  A Very Merry Christmas and A happy New Year.

3 Replies to “FOI Request re: Income Derived from HTH – Update”

  1. I have just read the reply to the FOI request.

    “We are currently liaising with a 3rd party in respect of your request so
    we are not yet in a position to provide a full reply.”

    That’s it?!?

    No indication of when a reply might be forthcoming? The request went in on 23 Nov. – over 5 weeks ago. The Council liaise with ANA on a regular basis. As you say it is beyond the bounds of belief that the Council is unaware of the revenue raised from the commercial activities in HTH. This smacks very much of ‘Don’t bother me, pleb.’

    I don’t doubt that the information will only be sourced once the deal is done, cut and dried, all tied up. And then the information will be redundant: so, no point in releasing it to the public.

    This is simply a measure to drag the process out beyond the contract signing stage.

    Shame on Haringey Council.

  2. The response is deliberately and feebly ambiguous. The 3rd party might be FEC for the sale, or as Brian has read, a counterpart to a lease who knows answers they don’t. Or maybe even the telecomms company who run the mast and want a new deal. Whatever, it is not good enough. I have asked for an internal review in respect of the answer. I will write to the Information Commissioner, about this and other non-answers.

  3. Thank you for this update.
    I find it very concerning.
    I have written to Cllr Jason Arthur
    who is my local councillor and also the Finance Officer asking for clarification on who the third party is and asking why the council don’t have the figures readily available.
    I trust that he will reply adapt as I am sure he will understand the importance of rehearsing these figures.

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