500 signatures reached
To: Alok Sharma MP
Save Reading Gaol for the community
Act to ensure that your government thinks again and save this unique historical site for the community rather than selling the Gaol site purely for profit.
Why is this important?
Reading Gaol is of huge national and international cultural significance in terms of its history and its ties to Oscar Wilde’s incarceration there. For the LGBT community those connections to Oscar Wilde are of heightened importance. Wilde wrote “De Profundis,” from his cell and the site was later the inspiration for his poem: “The Ballad of Reading Gaol”
As a listed building and a Scheduled Monument, it is of national historical importance. The eastern section of the 900 year old Abbey church and quite possibly the site of Henry I’s tomb lie underneath the ground. The community in Reading and beyond feel that it's best future is as a cultural and arts site that can share this history and complete the Abbey Quarter for Reading.
The council submitted a bid for the site with the support of the community.
Matt Rodda MP for Reading East has said "I am concerned that the Government still want to sell the gaol to the highest bidder and I understand they now have a preferred bidder who they are working with."
Alok Sharma as the neighbouring MP for Reading West prior to the election spoke in support of saving the site, wore a 'save Reading Gaol T-shirt' and said he would back the campaign.
We call on him to act on these words now. As a member of the government he is in a unique position to ensure that this special site is saved for our community.
How it will be delivered
Given the current Corona virus situation we will deliver this petition via email to The Rt Hon Alok Sharma MP's office.