The Old Barn Action Group have thrown down the gauntlet and are calling for Rev Muhoro to resign immediately and hand back the keys to the centre to the local community.
They are also demanding that Barnet Council step in and take action now to enforce terms of the existing lease and governing documents of the Old Barn Youth and Community Association so that local residents can join and have their say in the future of the community centre.
Residents gathered outside the Old Barn this afternoon (Thursday 24th May), outraged by Rev Muhoro’s refusal to let them hold a meeting inside the Old Barn.
“It is shameful what Rev Muhoro is doing to the local community, locking us out of our own community centre, it’s disgusting” said one local resident.
“I’m worried about the future of the Old Barn, Rev Muhoro does not appear at all interested in listening to the local community or running the centre the way that we want. He organised a so-called open day but then does absolutely nothing to let local people know that it is going on – as a local resident I would have expected a leaflet through my door”
“What are Barnet Council doing about this? Surely if they own the building and have leased it to the Old Barn Youth and Community Association then they have the power to uphold the terms of that lease and make sure Rev Muhoro abides by it. There should be a management committee and at least an annual general meeting to decided who is on it to represent the local community”
“We are encouraging local residents to come and tie balloons and ribbons to the fencing that surrounds the Old Barn. Each balloon or ribbon represents each of the local people who have been excluded from using the premises, local children who have no where safe to play and learn, the missed opportunities lost each day the centre is not managed properly”
“As long as Rev Muhoro refuses to listen to local residents then we need everyone to boycott the centre until he comes to his senses. He has ignored every effort that we have made to engage with him constructively but he can’t ignore the whole community tying balloons and ribbons to the fence – it’s going to draw a lot of attention – until Barnet Council step in and take action”.
“One of the demands of the Old Barn Action Group is that Maureen’s Monday Club is allowed to use the centre again. They need a permanent base for their youth activities and the Old Barn was perfect. There is a lot of support from young people who live in the area for the centre to be put to good use.”
Will Hudson, Maureen Clementson, Michele Haniotis and Mark Healey – members of the Old Barn Action Group – determined to get the Old Barn restored to the local community.