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Government 'undervalued courthouse'

Minister insists best deal was pursued

Government valuers last year valued Ramsey courthouse and its grounds at £400,000; £75,000 less than an estate agent priced it on the commercial market.

That figure was released in Tynwald this morning, as questions were asked about the future of the site.

Ramsey ratepayers want it to remain in pubic ownership, and the town's Commissioners have agreed to make a bid pending discussions with Home Affairs chiefs.

The minister, Bill Malarkey, who has stressed he needs to get 'the best deal for the taxpayer', told Tynwald the complex had not been simply put on the market by the department.

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