The mission of the Iron Rail Commission
remains the same today as it did at the time the Iron Rail Property
was first purchased by the Town in 1974:
To maintain, repair and
protect the property.
To aggressively plan
for rental, gymnasium and meadow use in order to create income,
revitalize the land and encourage active use of the area for
educational purposes and recreational enjoyment by all townspeople.
To work with other town
groups in arranging for the orderly use of the land, including the
layout of roads and the negotiating of locations for specific site
use, safety and scheduling.
The Commission provides
the following on a continual basis:
Custodial services to
ensure building security and safety, including keeping walkways clear
of snow and ice.
Cleaning of the common
areas of the buildings, including lobby and washrooms.
Grounds keeping around
the buildings, including grass mowing, fall and spring clean-ups.
Periodic maintenance of
the building and its heating, electrical, plumbing and septic systems.
Necessary repairs to
keep the buildings sound and all systems running properly.
of the conservation areas, including tree work and brush clearing.
Coordination with town
departments using the property.
Coordination with the
Hamilton-Wenham Youth Soccer Association (HWYSA) to maintain the
cleanliness and security of the soccer fields.
Ensure all rent
payments are received on time.
Presently, the Iron
Rail Property is utilized as follows:
The Highway Department
maintains its headquarters and main garage on the property.
The Water Department
has a water storage facility adjacent to the Highway Department.
The Cemetery Commission
has been given control of the "orchard section" of the property for a
new cemetery and has established an access road.
Soccer Association has been granted a 20 year lease, expiring in 2015,
and is operating three soccer fields. Under a license agreement
with HWYSA, Landmark School has limited use of the fields, assisting
with maintenance and paying rent to the Town.
The gymnasium is rented
by Iron Rail Gymnastics Academy under a 5 year lease, expiring in
2006. They have moved gymnastics and martial arts activities to
another location, but still occupy part of the building and sublet
other areas to Provost Personal Training and Firm Up Fast Studio.
Products Corporation rents a small office in the barn. Other
office space in that building is available for rent.
Boy Scout Troop 28
holds its regular Monday evening meetings and other activities in the
barn and also runs a redeemable bottle and can collecting operation on
the site. At times, the Scouts assist with maintenance,
including such tasks as painting and brush clearing.
The Boy Scout meeting
room in the barn, which measures 40x40 feet and has kitchen and
bathroom facilities, is available to Wenham residents for meetings and
other gatherings except when the room is being used by the Scouts.
Permission must be obtained from the Commission prior to any such use.
The remainder of the
property is being maintained as conservation land. Roads and
trails in that part of the property are available for use by
townspeople. Permission must be obtained from the Commission for
any overnight camping and campfires require permission from the
Commission and the Fire Department.
In the absence of
interest by other town departments and the Regional School District to
utilize the buildings, the Commission has been successful in deriving
substantial rental income for the Town from the property. For
the last ten years, net income after all expenditures has totaled
$859,000; net income for this fiscal year is expected to be $90,500.
Ted Batchelder, Chairman
A. Winslow Dodge
William P. Hidden
The commission holds regular public meetings on the first Monday of
each month at 7:00 p.m. at the Wenham Town Hall, 138 Main Street.
If the first Monday falls on a holiday, the meeting is held on the