THE Corn Exchange in Witney will not be available for function bookings until April next year.

Witney Town Council maintains it wants the Market Square building open by the end of the year but said it has to be “realistic” about when it can be used for events such as weddings.

The Grade II-listed building was closed suddenly in November 2011 after a safety inspection uncovered serious health and safety problems.

At a meeting of the council’s public halls committee on Tuesday, chairman Roger Curry said: “We’re working hard to get it open by the end of the year.

“There may be some slippage because something might arise in the construction work. We think it might be realistic to say April as a date when we could say we’re reasonably confident that we could accept a wedding booking.

“We can keep using Langdale Hall through April and longer so there will be an overlap.”

Mr Curry said the Corn Exchange will have the same facilities as Langdale Hall, which is to be put up for sale “shortly” to fund the Corn Exchange refurbishments, including a bar, stage, kitchen and parking.

Reopening the building has been delayed after asbestos was found earlier this year but work ro remove it is expected to begin next month.

Our top stories