Swinton Library closed after concrete discovery

SWINTON’S library building faces a lengthy closure after the discovery of RAAC – reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete.
Swinton LibrarySwinton Library
Swinton Library

Rotherham Council’s asset management team has been reviewing the authority’s estate to check for the substance, which was used as a cheap alternative to regular concrete mixes from the 1950s.

Measures have to be taken to ensure buildings are safe for staff and residents when RAAC is found during these inspections.

At Swinton Library it has been found in the roof, meaning the premises have been closed.

RMBC said alternative arrangements have been put in place at the newly renovated Swinton Civic Hall, while further surveys are carried out to establish whether remedial work is appropriate.

Assistant director Rob Mahon, who oversees the maintenance of all RMBC buildings, said: “The health and safety of our residents and staff is our priority, which is why we have temporarily closed Swinton Library as a precautionary measure.

“We made the decision to close the site as a precaution last week while further surveys are conducted, and potential mitigations investigated.

“This decision is supported by recent government guidance issued due to concerns where RAAC has been used in schools, prompting similar concerns around other public buildings including libraries.”

A new library is set to be opened early next year at the former customer service centre building as part of the Swinton town centre masterplan.

This will mean the demolition of the current library off Station Street, with the area then landscaped.

Building work has already started on housing as part of the overall project, a partnership with Ben Bailey.