Liverpool stately home Croxteth Hall to be run by trust
A trust is to be set up to run a Merseyside stately home and country park, it has been confirmed.
Croxteth Hall's owner Liverpool City Council announced in November it was looking for interested parties to take over the Grade II listed building.
The tourist attraction is costing more than £1m a year to run, which the local authority says it cannot afford.
More than 40 organisations came forward and the council said the new trust will run the hall to "benefit public needs".
Labour councillor Peter Mitchell said: "We had expressions of interest from a whole series of organisations that came forward.
"Two significant players came to the table with plans to do something significant for the hall and grounds.
"We are not selling the family silver.
"We are saving the city money and protecting the heritage of the hall and the park.
"It will remain open to the public and and continue to be used as a living museum."
West Derby Society chairman Stephen Guy, said: "We support any moves to ensure the future of Croxteth Hall and park and the admission of the public to this remarkable historic house and country estate.
"However, any plans have to be legally watertight and acceptable to all concerned."
The council said plans for the future of the hall have been set back because of legal concerns raised by the city solicitor's office over procurement [tendering] rules.
City council officers are working on a draft cabinet paper including procurement issues.
- Croxteth Hall was the ancestral home of the Molyneux family, the Earls of Sefton
- The hall and parts of the estate were bequeathed to the people of Liverpool following the death of Hugh, the 7th and last Earl, in 1972
- It is at the heart of what was once a great country estate stretching hundreds of square miles
- Croxteth Hall is mainly 18th Century, but it embodies other periods, the oldest being Elizabethan
- It is a Grade II listed building and parts of it date back to 1575, although with rebuilding, it is in effect an Edwardian mansion