Mayday Saxonvale

by Silk Mill - Damon & Kate Moore

Mayday Saxonvale

by Silk Mill - Damon & Kate Moore
Silk Mill - Damon & Kate Moore
Case Owner
The Silk Mill has 22 studios & an event space for exhibitions, weddings, markets & concerts. In 2015, we won an AIA best reuse of a former industrial building award.
26
days to go
£4,285
pledged of £25,000 stretch target from 23 pledges
Pledge now
Silk Mill - Damon & Kate Moore
Case Owner
The Silk Mill has 22 studios & an event space for exhibitions, weddings, markets & concerts. In 2015, we won an AIA best reuse of a former industrial building award.
Pledge now

This case is raising funds for its stretch target. Your pledge will be collected within the next 24-48 hours (and it only takes two minutes to pledge!)

Latest: Sept. 7, 2020

Our District Councillors Need to Start Speaking Out

Dear Supporter,

Our case for full transparency of the developer's agreement between Mendip District Council and Acorn is moving towards a decision later this month by the First-Tier Tribunal. We h…

Read more

Mayday Saxonvale is a group of Frome residents & creative businesses based at the Silk Mill.  We want to see the best possible outcome from the development of Saxonvale; a huge brownfield site in the centre of our lovely medieval market town.

The site belongs to Mendip District Council.  Our first CrowdJustice campaign produced evidence that the contract made with developers Acorn Properties was drawn up in breach of public procurement legislation. There was no transparent tendering & the appointment process has restricted the chance for truly innovative proposals to meet the needs & challenges of the 21st century.  

Now we are raising funds to oppose the revised contract with Acorn and the poor design, both of which put monetary profit before social profit. Our campaign is about:
- Responsive development to meet the needs of communities
- Improper use of public funds
- Transparency in planning appointments & decisions

This site is significant for future of Frome. It is the last remaining employment & commercial base including historic buildings that Acorn's application seeks to demolish. 

Plans on the table at the moment are dismal.  If enacted they could jeopardise the activities of the many businesses currently operating within the red line of the development at Silk Mill Studios & Gallery; a major restoration of one of Frome's many listed buildings & providing studios for 22 artists & makers as well as a key town centre event space.

Mayday Saxonvale needs to raise £30,000 but we have an initial target of £2,000 that is already in the fund from our earlier campaign.

Here are two of the many supportive comments from last year's appeal;

Thank you so much for reading this far.  Please pledge to help make a difference to the future of this very special town. Then tell others who you think might do the same.  

Recent contributions

  • Joel pledged £50
    Match Joel's pledge of £50
    I feel compelled to contribute in what ever small way I can. I cant stand silent and then complain if ACORNS plan comes to fruition if I didn't stand against in any way shape or form. Our town deserves better.
  • Emily pledged £25
    Match Emily's pledge of £25
    I have written strenuous objections to this plan to Mendip District Council. There is a planning meeting on 26th August when the Saxonvale case will be discussed. Meetings are supposed to be open to the public (not sure with Covid), so I intend to attend. Just to see how it is handled....
  • Someone pledged £10
    Match their pledge of £10
    I object to this plan. Frome needs a well thought out mixed-use plan that accommodates local artists and local businesses. The current plan does not meet these criteria.

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Update 3

Silk Mill - Damon & Kate Moore

Sept. 7, 2020

Our District Councillors Need to Start Speaking Out

Dear Supporter,

Our case for full transparency of the developer's agreement between Mendip District Council and Acorn is moving towards a decision later this month by the First-Tier Tribunal. We have uncovered new evidence thanks to our solicitors Pre-Action Protocol submission and the CrowdJustice campaign so there is a good chance of successfully disclosing the contract and seeing for the first time, exactly what financial arrangements have been agreed. Our MP is helping but there are still many gaps in the evidence file and a lot we don't know. Our local democratic system has been completely impounded in Frome because of Acorn's application and the public and Town Councillors misled. It is time for all 11 of our elected District Councillors to start speaking out.

Update 2

Silk Mill - Damon & Kate Moore

July 3, 2020

GRC Accept Mayday Evidence

In our case for full disclosure of the developer's contract, the General Regulatory Chamber First-tier Tribunal have accepted evidence that Acorn's contract with Mendip District Council was unlawful. We now call upon the District Council to annul this contract and put the site out to tender in accordance with proper procurement procedure. Meanwhile Acorn, supported by the District Council are pushing ahead with their application in breach of Frome's local development plan for Saxonvale with no commitment that the Core Target for affordable housing will be met. Our appeal will be heard by the GRC at the end of August.

Update 1

Silk Mill - Damon & Kate Moore

May 18, 2020

New initiative pending...

Since we began our legal action, the District Council have barred any direct contact with the Silk Mill, yet another demonstration of the lack of democratic accountability and transparency over Acorn's scheme for Saxonvale. The Acorn contract has been confirmed by our solicitors to be a Public Works Contract and not the straightforward sale agreement that the District Council have always claimed. Meanwhile, the Council have re-written this document as a Deed of Variation to help avoid Mayday's procurement challenge. Full disclosure of the contract for our legal team is ongoing and currently being appealed to the First-Tier Tribunal. It could go all the way to the High Court. 

There are clear indications that Mendip District Council and Acorn's plan is to impose this very unpopular and unsympathetic scheme onto our wonderfully creative and special town.  We would like to assure all of our campaign supporters that during the Covid-19 lockdown we have been working on a new initiative to be announced shortly.

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