In a meeting last week the Council's Labour Leader, Tony Newman, quietly confirmed that Fairfield Halls was likely to be reopened next year - when it was scheduled to reopen this July. When grilled by Conservative Councillor Helen Pollard, Cllr Newman let slip that "it’s down to which day in 2019 it will reopen" a statement that means December 31st 2019 could be the new, extremely delayed opening time for our beloved Halls.
Even with a 2019 opening, there is no guarantee the whole building will be open - with Cllr Newman confirming the Halls will open in stages, one section at a time.
This will mean Croydon residents must endure an additional year without the shows and pantomimes we all love - and the reputation of our borough consistently dwindling as a result.
With contractors not visible on site until the middle of last year, it's no wonder that the delivery date keeps on slipping.
If elected in May this year to take over the running of Croydon Council, we pledge to do all we can to rescue this stalling project, listen to those experts in the community and in the industry to reinvigorate our cultural offer, and continue to do what's in the best interests of the arts in Croydon.