End of an era for district landmarks - The Leamington Observer

End of an era for district landmarks

Leamington Editorial 5th Jun, 2024   0

LANDMARK buildings across the district will soon be consigned to history.

Warwick District Council Cabinet is this week set to agree the go-ahead to find a contractor to carry out demolition work which will spell the end for a number of prominent structures known to thousands of residents down the decades.

Multi-storey car parks, Covent Garden in Leamington and Linen Street in Warwick, are included on the demolition list, as are the old Kenilworth School and Christine Ledger Square flats in Leamington.

The council also wants other as yet unidentified sites included in the life of the contract, which is set to cost in the region of £18million over four years.

Both town centre car parks are now closed after investigations revealed major structural issues.

Covent Garden, which was built in 1960, closed for good in February last year, while Linen Street closed in the summer of 2021 after a lifespan of more than 40 years.

Spiralling maintenance and repair costs left council chiefs with no option but to put down the barriers.

Covent Garden, with demolition costs estimated at £1.2million, had also been plagued by anti-social behaviour in its latter years.

Former Kenilworth School sites on Rouncil Lane and Leyes Lane are earmarked for new homes after they are knocked down. The have been empty since last summer following the opening of the new multi-million pound school campus on Glasshouse Lane.

The Christone Ledger Square flats, off Brunswick Street, have stood empty since December 2022. The cost of demolition is estimated at around £1.5million.

WDC moved quickly to re-home residents living in the the 11 storey tower block after a fire service investigation found it fell “well below” acceptable safety standards and was too dangerous for residents to remain there.

Following the 2017 Grenfell tragedy, WDC carried out an extensive review of its eight other blocks of flats and spent £2.5million on safety improvements.

A report to Cabinet stated: “The proposed contract would be for an overarching agreement with a chosen supplier to meet all WDC demolition needs for the next four years.

“To procure individual contracts for each project is an option, but this would

require significant procurement time for each project and may not represent

best value.”



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