Town Centre House was vacated due to the use of RAAC


pic: Google

Cherwell District Council had rehoused all the tenants by early this year after the problem was found

Town Centre House in Banbury was closed after it was discovered that reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete (RAAC) had been used in the building’s roof.

The material has hit the headlines in recent days after areas in a number of schools were deemed unsafe due to the potential for RAAC to weaken and collapse.

Council officers discovered that RAAC had been used in Town Centre House and had all the residents rehoused by early this year.

The property, on the corner of the Southam Road and Warwick Road, was built in the 1980s.   As an office block it had remained empty for 10 years when it was bought with the intention of repurposing for affordable housing.   Cherwell District Council secured more than £1m in grants from the Homes and Community Agency to fund the refurbishment.

The first tenants moved in during 2016.

The building contains 6 two-bedroom flats and 34 one-bedroom flats.   It is owned by Ai Property Group but let to Cherwell District Council on a 35 year lease. The Council’s lease requires it to complete any repairs.

A spokesperson for Cherwell District Council said, “We are aware of RAAC planks in the roof of Town Centre House in Banbury and early this year completed the rehousing of the residents.  We have taken steps to ascertain how the roof can be refitted and the flats made safe again for people to live in.   We will be commencing work on the project during the autumn.”

The Council says it is working with other social housing providers in our area to ascertain whether RAAC is a problem within their property portfolio.

The spokesperson said: “We continue to work with over 30 registered providers of social housing to encourage them to improve the quality of their housing stock for local residents and are in consultation with them on this issue. Early indications are that this isn’t an area of concern.”

Published: by Banbury FM Newsteam

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