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Varsity campus up for sale

The old synagogue building in the centre of town is up for liquidation.

The historic building has been occupied by the Hermanus Varsity since early 2019, but stood empty for several years before that. A meeting was held at the building between committee members, tutors and learners of the varsity on Tuesday 22 October. CEO of the varsity, Delana Finlayson, informed everyone that the building which they are currently renting has been put up for liquidation.

Finlayson explained that this news was quite a big shock.

According to Finlayson there are three options which they are currently exploring. The first option is to purchase the building from the liquidators at R6,5 million, option two is to wait until the building is put up for auction and then participate in the auction. Finlayson however says that there are a few risks involved with the second option. “People didn’t notice the potential of the building until we started using it. This means there will be more interest in the building.”

Finlayson added that another option is to purchase the building at a lower price. The last option is to find alternative premises. “All these options are being assessed and we are working with our lawyers in order to make the best decision going forward.”

Although the varsity has signed a ten year lease agreement, the liquidation act will take precedence and come into play, which allows the liquidators to terminate the agreement.

Currently there are 33 students registered in the second Local Economic Development pilot course which started in October.

Finlayson however emphasised that it will be business as usual for Hermanus Varsity in 2020, new courses will be offered and will not be disrupted by the sale of the property. “We are open to any advice on the way forward.”

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