Prayer answered in Wing as one social project finances another
Published by Brian Church for 24dash.com in Housing and also in Communities
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Wing Hall Trust in Buckinghamshire has created five one-bedroom flats for rent. This will generate income to maintain the parish hall and also help ease the shortage of affordable rental accommodation in the area.
Wing is between Aylesbury and Leighton Buzzard. The first tenant is scheduled to move in this month.
The trust borrowed £100,000 from Charity Bank - the ethical bank that lends solely to social sector organisations – after being turned down by its own bank, which it did not name.
Wing Hall was given to the village in 1906 by the de Rothschild family to be used as the village hall. In 1967, the family donated Charlotte Cottage, next door to the hall, so that rental income could pay for its maintenance and upkeep.
Charlotte Cottage was first used as a cottage hospital and later was converted into offices, with the first tenants being Thames Valley Police and the local parish council. The parish council has closed its office, leaving just the police and the library.
Needing to secure a steady income, the trustees and management of Wing Hall were advised to convert the cottage into flats for rent, while retaining office space for Thames Valley Police. The work was costed at £110,000, funded by a 100k, 10-year loan from Charity Bank.
Carolyn Sims, Charity Bank’s head of banking, said: "Apart from an ability to pay back a loan, Charity Bank demands from all its borrowers that they can demonstrate they will create a significant social impact with the money they borrow, and Wing Hall will certainly achieve this."