FEARS were raised that if a county council were to take on a historic landmark, money would have to be constantly ‘thrown’ at it.

During the Ordinary Meeting of Abergele Town Council on Thursday, March 4, members discussed the growing desire to protect Kinmel Hall after campaigners said it had been “left to rot”.

Town council members agreed that a charge against the building or enforcement action, such as a compulsory purchase order that could see it transferred into the ownership of Conwy County Borough Council, was not the route anyone wanted to venture down at this stage.

Councillor Charlie McCoubrey said: “In terms of putting charge on the building, the building sold for a million and a half last time. It is probably worth a lot less than that now.

"You could run up that bill very very quickly with legal fees and essential repairs.

"It then becomes an ongoing cycle where you have taken responsibility so you have to keep throwing more and more money at it.

"It can just become a bottomless pit.”

Cllr McCoubrey said about £30million was needed to restore the building.

He added: "It would be the county council [spending the money]. It is not a small job."

Photographer Phil Micheu took this photograph of Kinmel Hall (Clarendon Girls School) during the hight of the blaze in 1975. The fire gutted the West wing and main hall of the building.

Photographer Phil Micheu took this picture of Kinmel Hall (Clarendon Girls School) during the hight of the blaze in 1975. The fire gutted the West wing and main hall of the building.

The current owners are Acer Properties Ltd.

Cllr Sam Rowlands said: “It will certainly have to be a balancing act with bringing the owner to the table to carry out works, preferably rather than enforcement taking place. Escalate on both sides of the equation.

“I’m really comfortable that the owners...that discussions are taking place, so yes, in terms of strong enforcement it is available.

"I don’t think it is necessary right at this second.”

The Grade I listed building was discussed during the remote meeting, over Zoom, following a letter from SAVE Britain's Heritage.

It was proposed that the town council writes to the author of letter.

"This will be to indicate our thanks for their interest and support for any efforts to see the site brought back into a good use," cllr Rowlands said.

This was seconded.

Cllr Andrew Wood said: "I would also like to involve SAVE and they are very passionate. Maybe we can work with them, our colleagues for the best way forward. Maybe pressure all round.

"This building is at a tipping point now. Let us work with SAVE, colleagues, planning, regulatory services and the owners."