A CHARITABLE trust which hopes to take over Richmond's old station building is to present its ideas to councillors on Thursday.

A special meeting of Richmondshire District Council resources committee has been arranged to allow the proposals to be outlined and for members to consider financial and business details of two other bids.

The Friends of Richmond Station was formed after the council deferred a decision on the future of the empty station to allow the two other bidders to submit more detailed proposals.

Land Team hopes to establish a gym and restaurant, which would include relocation of the Gemini health club to the premises while Encore proposes a two-screen cinema, arts area and restaurant.

The Friends of Richmond Station aims to take over the building before carrying out a detailed assessment of how best it could be developed.

The trust has sent a newsletter and survey to 7,000 households and has received almost 400 responses to the survey, with most people supporting community, recreation and leisure use of the building.

A spokesman was confident a mix of uses could be achieved, meeting the criteria set out by the council.

Cash donations of £1,500 have also been sent to the Friends, along with offers of help in kind.

"There is clearly a long way to go," said the spokesman. "We are less than eight weeks from the invitation to submit proposals, yet a fantastic amount has been achieved, especially as part of the period has involved the Christmas break.

"What has been proved is that the council's decision to invite a charitable trust to come forward has touched a chord in the community. We need time to ensure that the proposals have a sound, non-profit-making financial footing to ensure that the re-opened station serves our community for years to come."