Woodbridge residents have given their verdict on the future of the town's Shire Hall- and they would like the prominent 16th century building to be renovated.

The town council had held a four-week consultation with residents and visitors to the Suffolk market town to determine what should happen to the hall, which is showing the effects of its age and has issues with the timber in the walls, including dry rot and damp.

READ MORE: Suffolk residents to decide future of Grade I Shire Hall

The consultees had to vote on three options- to restore, renovate or sell the building- and more than 900 responses were received, with 68% favouring renovation.

This option includes structural and non-structural fabric repairs to the interior and exterior of the floors, as well as the installation of a lift enabling the first floor to be opened for community use.

Woodbridge mayor Eamonn O’Nolan said: “It has been interesting to see the number of responses received in the consultation on the future of The Shire Hall, with respondents for each of the three options speaking passionately about their decision.

READ MORE: Woodbridge news

“The Shire Hall is a prominent feature of our town – understanding the view of the public before we make any further decisions has been an important exercise. 

“We appreciate this will have been a very hard decision for many to make – especially considering today’s economic climate – and are thankful for the impassioned arguments we received on all sides of the debate.” 

Of the other options, more than 250 people- or 27.7%- voted to restore the building, including repairs to the ground floor and exterior, while 39 people- 4.3%- opted to sell the hall, which has been home to the town council since 1987.

The town council will outline a time frame for the renovation of the building, built by Thomas Seckford in 1575, at a later date.

READ MORE: Suffolk news