New Forest District Council gives green light to demolition of Totton's Royal British Legion building
A RUN-DOWN building used for more than 80 years by the Totton branch of the Royal British Legion can be demolished, New Forest District Council has confirmed.
As previously reported in the A&T, it closed in 2019 and a report revealed it needed new electrics, flooring, a kitchen and toilet – estimated to cost around £35,000.
The site was sold in 2020 and the new owner, Ran Investments Ltd, submitted a notification to NFDC of its plan to demolish it.
A council report has now confirmed it can go ahead with the demolition, which is due to take place on 17th January.
The hall in Commercial Road was gifted to the Totton and Eling Royal British Legion branch in 1938 by local resident Marion Dibden for the use of ex-servicemen.
It dates from the late 19th century and over the years many repairs have been carried out by branch members.
A planning report said the structure was "a modest, single-storey building that is vacant and in a poor stare of repair".
It added: "The applicant has submitted an asbestos survey of the building together with ecological surveys which conclude that no protected species are present or would be affected by the proposed demolition. The council's environment health officer is content to raise no objection.
"It is considered that demolition can proceed without detriment to resident amenities and without adversely affecting nature conservation interests."
The branch continues to run in the town. Its next meeting takes place at 11am tomorrow (Saturday) at Totton Conservative Club.
Totton councillor David Harrison commented: "The building hosted many get-togethers of various types over the years. I can recall attending Christmas fetes, jumble sales, post Remembrance Day parade tea and biscuits and even a barbecue with veterans.
"It is part of the town's history but not a building that is worth preserving."