Monday, 05 September 2016 19:08

Friends of Blencathra "see no prospects of a successful purchase.

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After a long running battle Friends of Blencathra have thrown in the towel and accepted that there is no realistic chance of purchasing Blencathra.

Blencathra under cloud

The owner, the 8th Earl of Lonsdale, originally expressed an intent to sell the land back in 2014 to settle tax liabilities and for the last 2 years it's been an onn/off story that finally appears to be settled with the latest announcement from the community group created to "buyy Blencathra". Over recent months the owner has repeatedly reported to the press that the mountain is no longer for sale, but the community group has pursued the sale following a public appeal for funds, saying discussions have been ongoing.

The following statement issued today on the charity's Facebook page appears to bring the long running saga to a conclusion.

Press Statement
'Last month we received an ultimatum to make a final offer for 'Blencathra' within 21 days from the solicitors acting for Lonsdale Settled Estates. It was made clear that the offer would have to be substantially above the valuations we have received for the Mountain to be acceptable and that the other proposals we had offered would not be considered. The property was vested in the name of the Eighth Earl of Lonsdale last week.
The Trustees of... Friends of Blencathra Ltd have declined to make an offer on the terms indicated and with the change of ownership, now see no prospects of a successful purchase by the Charity.
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The Trustees will meet shortly to discuss the implications of that decision and prepare a public consultation on the future of the Charity.'
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General
It was finally agreed with the Charity Commission that the outstanding accounts had been correctly filed on the 14th July 2016 and a copy will now be posted in the files section on this page.
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At the last Trustee meeting two new Trustees were proposed, myself and Mike Chambers as Chair (designate) and Vice-Chair (designate) respectively subject to all officers remaining in situ in order to establish formal handover when documents had been accepted by all parties. The accounts (and books) were with the examiners at the time and it was therefore agreed that these appointments would be formalised at the next trustees meeting once the accounts and any outstanding reports had been accepted by both the Charity Commission and Companies House.
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We have been in recent communication with the Charity Commission and whilst the intention of the Charity with regard to donations has been stated, the Trustees need to verify that the provisions of the Charities Act are fully complied with. This will be a priority matter for discussion at the next Trustees meeting.
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Dave Wheeler
on behalf of Friends of Blencathra Ltd

Last modified on Tuesday, 22 November 2016 22:53