The controversial Regent Theatre in Mudgee will be sold at auction on Friday, 6 March.
Director at The Property Shop, Andrew Palmer confirmed to the Mudgee Guardian that the historic building will go under the hammer after the building was repossessed by Sydney law firm Summer Lawyers in 2019.
The announcement drew widespread community discussion with some wondering if an offer could be made ahead of the auction, Andrew Palmer says this is not the case.
"Because it's a mortgagee in possession, they really need it to go through that auction process. The auction process is very transparent from the buyer's point of view so everybody sitting in the room, they all have the opportunity to bid and they can all see what's happening, it needs to go through that process," Mr Palmer said.
The building has deteriorated over the years due to the lack of use, Andrew says he'd love to see something come of it but admits that it has to be viable for the owner.
"I think for me personally I'd just love to see something happen to it. It's a beautiful building, with a lot of historical features here and it's still very, very well intact. However it's deteriorating very, very quickly with no use," he said.
"Unfortunately there's been squatters and vandals break into it and there's birds now nesting in there so it's deteriorating very, very quickly, So I'd love to see it being used, developed.
Realistically I think it's going to have to have some form of mixed commercial, or potentially commercial and residential use.
"It'd be wonderful if it could be a theatre again, obviously, but it's got to be viable for the person that owns it, and unfortunately a lot of people looked at theatres and so far no one's been able to come up with a plan to make one work. It'd be fantastic if they can, if the group that want to do that can make that happen that'd be wonderful.
"Realistically I think it's going to have to have some form of mixed commercial, or potentially commercial and residential use."
A controversial development application (DA) lodged in 2018 proposed turning the building into a multi-use facility which included accommodation, function centre and bar facilities.
This proposal was knocked back by Council and an amended DA was put forth.
A growing community group called 'Revive the Regent' has long been a proponent of turning the building into a multi-use entertainment hub.
Andrew said there was a misconception in the community that developers past and present had wanted to demolish the building.
Everybody sees the beauty and the value of the building.
"Some of the community seem to have the impression that the current DA and also the proposed previous DA that's been declined involved demolishing the whole building, and that's just misinformation," he said.
"The front of the building, the facade and a lot of those beautiful heritage features, they have to remain. It's protected, it's a local heritage listing and that protects all of that and there's currently an interim state heritage listing, that's still up for determination.
"A lot of the concern from people about mixed uses is the feeling that all of this is going to get demolished, and it won't. It stays and indeed I haven't had anybody - either the previous owners, these guys or anybody else - that have actually even wanted to.
"Everybody sees the beauty and the value of the building."
The building could be placed on the State Heritage Register after the State Heritage Register Committee of the Heritage Council of NSW at its meeting on 5 November 2019 resolved to advise the Special Minister for State, the Hon Don Harwin MLC, that the Regent Theatre is of state heritage significance, and to recommend its listing on the State Heritage Register under the NSW Heritage Act 1977.
So far no announcement has been made.
Owners Richard Wynne and Chris Matthews have been contacted for comment.