A popular church in Marlborough has been registered as an Asset of Community Value. 

Christchurch Methodist Church, in New Road, had become a "burden" to its owners, and was to be closed and sold off. 

But now the local community will be given the chance to save the much-used meeting space. 

This follows a request from Marlborough Town Council, which is keen to see the church stay open and available to local groups, after owners announced its closure at the end of March this year.  

READ MORE: Church that has become a 'burden' to close and be sold off

The registration as an ACV gives interested groups in the community an opportunity to put together a potential bid to buy it. 

In the application, the town council said the church is "of intrinsic community value and has been for many years", adding that the venue "has the potential to offer an excellent and vibrant facility for the community again", with the right investment of time and funds.  

This means that no sale can now take place before December 15, and gives the interested parties six months to raise funding and put together their bid.   

READ MORE: Council attempt to make Marlborough church an Asset of Community Value

According to Marlborough Town Council, the owner is under no obligation to accept offers, but this pause is intended to allow community groups time to organise themselves and increase their chance of making a successful bid.  

People wanted it to become an asset after a Methodist group running it said the 100-year-old building had become "a burden" and was to be sold off.   

Community groups in Marlborough that use the church on New Road for meetings and rehearsals have been informed that they will need to find new locations by the end of August, when the church officials plan to close the building. 

Councillor Nick Botterill, Cabinet Member for Strategic Planning, said: “Christchurch Methodist Church, in Marlborough, has been registered as an Asset of Community Value following a request from Marlborough Town Council.  

“The decision was made because the church is used as a place of worship and by many community groups as a venue.  

“The church is situated in a good and accessible central location and offers a range of workable spaces that could meet different community needs.  

“Providing no landowners request a review of this decision or a relevant disposal of the asset does not occur in the next five years, the property will remain on this list until June 2027.”