COMMUNITY leaders are anxious to make sure £40,000 of leftover money they say “belongs to Sealand” is used for the good of the community.
Sealand community councillor Mike Walker said he was shocked to learn that the hefty pot of community money had remained largely unspent for two decades.
Cllr Walker said the war chest was set up following the demolition of the former Sealand Parish Rooms about 20 years ago.
The building was used for community events but was given to the community of Sealand years before its demolition.
Cllr Walker said that when the building was demolished, the land was sold for £45,000, with the money put into a trust fund which people of Sealand could apply to for grants.
But only £5,000 of the money has been dished out in the 20 years since.
Now the trustees have decided to wind up the fund and Cllr Walker, who is a member of a new steering group brought together to help raise funds for St Bartholomew’s Church in Sealand, is adamant the money must remain in the area.
He said despite raising questions with the Rev David Lewis, who took over the chairmanship of the trust fund two years ago, about what would happen to the money when the trust was wound up, he was still in the dark.
“I kept on pressing,” he said.
“As a member of the public, I’ve a right to know. And also as a community councillor and as a member of the steering group.
“I was finally told that St Bart’s would get £10,000 but that leaves £30,000. Where’s it going to go?
“We’ve lost the community centre and the youth club and the scouts group who could have used it. There’s only the school left.”
Sealand Community Council clerk Peter Richmond has now written to the trustees on behalf of the council offering to help with the dissolving of the fund.
“It’s got to stay within Sealand,” added Cllr Walker.
“We want to know all the ‘ins and outs’ of what the money can and can’t be used for.
“Now we’ve been told it’s being wound up, we want to know where it’s going to go. We want to know why it’s not been spent. More importantly, we want to know where it’s going to go.”
A spokesman for the trustees said the trust was dealing with the matter in conjunction with the charity commission.