David Blunket weighs into the Old Deanery debate

Former Home Secretary, David Blunket, has entered the future of the Old Deanery by showing it is part of the national debate on the Church taking account of buildings and land having value to the community when it decides to accept higher offers from private bidders. This duty is a key part of The Localism Act – which sadly does not extend to the Old Deanery. Here is his comment : “It is eight years now since a Private Members’ Bill was piloted through Parliament to place emphasis on social value and not just monetary gain, including with the land and premises and the development of community facilities.

Since then both the Governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney (who stepped down earlier this year) and the current Archbishop of Canterbury have both stressed the importance of social capital and the very different approach to the value we place on the assets we hold.

Regrettably, not all those operating in the social sector or delivering services have got the message: maximizing financial return rather than long term community and social benefit. My hope is one day we will not need to remind even the most ardent accountant that there is an alternative to a simple and outdated ‘bottom line'”

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