Don't miss a story sign up to the North Devon Gazette's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

County council spends £400k on safety improvements at civic centre

14:42 10 March 2014

Devon County Council is spending £200,000 replacing fire doors at the civic centre in Barnstaple.

Devon County Council is spending £200,000 replacing fire doors at the civic centre in Barnstaple.

Archant

Upgrades ‘essential’ despite uncertainty over future of Barnstaple building.

DEVON County Council is spending nearly £400,000 on safety upgrades at the civic centre in Barnstaple – despite uncertainty over the future of the building.

Half the building could be empty by the end of the year but the council said it was carrying out the overhaul to comply with fire safety legislation.

Around 200 fire doors are being replaced as part of a planned maintenance contract awarded in November last year.

The work also includes building fire protection; links to the fire alarm system; protection in non-accessible areas; and re-configuration of the internal structure to meet current fire safety regulations.

The anticipated costs, which are yet to be finalised, are expected to be around £380,000

The county council is currently making £28million worth of cuts – including to day centres, residential homes and the youth service – because of a government funding squeeze.

A spokesman said fire safety audits had flagged up the ‘essential’ programme of work, expected to be completed shortly.

“The safety of staff and visitors in all of our buildings, including the civic centre in Barnstaple, is of paramount importance,” said the spokesperson.

“This work is essential regardless of whether the building is fully occupied or whether it will be vacated at some point in the future.”

Earlier this month, the Gazette reported that North Devon Council, which occupies just under half the building, had signalled its intention to find alternative premises.

Last week, architects revealed speculative plans to transform the building into riverside residential apartments, although the county council said no decisions had been made about the future of the building.

The county council has around 185 staff based at the civic centre. In addition to the district council, the main occupiers are HM Courts Service, the BBC, and the police, who occupy a separate building next door.

The county council spokesman added: “It’s very early days. We understand that North Devon Council would like to vacate the building. We’re discussing that with them with a view to ensuring the interests of both organisations are achieved.

“As part of our estates strategy more broadly, we are continually reviewing all our properties including the civic centre and other properties in Barnstaple.”

0 comments

Other News Stories

Yesterday, 17:00
Barnstaple Pannier Market will be the scene of Easter festivities again this year

Report says anti-social activity at historic market hall has intensified over the last few years, reaching ‘unprecedented’ levels.

Read more
Yesterday, 15:47
The North Devon Link Road.

Diversions in place while resurfacing work is completed

Read more
Yesterday, 15:36
Riverbank House, home of Torridge District Council

Rise is labelled ‘insensitive’ as councillors agree the first increase in six years

Read more
Yesterday, 15:32
Taser.

Devon and Cornwall Police will be in Barnstaple to discuss new plans.

Read more
Yesterday, 14:53
RSPCA worker Russ stopped to help a man trying to climb the railings on the Torridge Bridge

Quick thinking motorists could well have saved a life

Read more
Yesterday, 14:28
Barnstaple Elephant Day organisers (from left) Adrian Hutchinson, Rebecca James and Terrance James. Picture: Matt Smart

An envelope full of £20 notes was left on the festival organiser’s chairman doorstep.

Read more
Yesterday, 11:27
Derek Clough from Barnstaple has been missing since June 19

Have you seen Derek Clough, aged 80?

Read more
Yesterday, 11:00
Orchard Vale pupils Maddie and Grace Milton and Lillian Dunsworth and school Premises Manager Clive Magson. Picture: Andy Keeble

Barnstaple primary school’s appeal to inconsiderate dog walker

Read more
Yesterday, 10:04
Paul Stevens is organising a celebration walk in his son Daniel’s memory. Picture: Andy Keeble

Father who struggled after son’s suicide vows to help other bereaved parents

Read more
Yesterday, 10:00
The former Tantons Hotel in Bideford.

Developer says it is not economically viable to meet Environment Agency’s demands to prevent flood of ‘Biblical proportions’.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 14°C

min temp: 13°C

Most Read News

Great British Life

Great British Life

Useful Links

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
Competitions
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Image
Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Local business directory

North Devon's trusted business finder

Find planning applications