Swinton library relocated to civic hall following discovery of RAAC

Council News
Council News

The Swinton library building has been closed for the foreseeable future after RAAC was discovered following inspections, with alternative arrangements made. 

Rotherham Council’s Asset Management Team has been reviewing the authority’s estate to check for the presence of reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete (RAAC). Should RAAC be found, actions are taken to ensure buildings remain safe to residents and staff.  

In the case of Swinton Library, RAAC has been identified in the roof and therefore the building has been closed. 

Alternative arrangements have been put in place at the newly renovated Swinton Civic Hall, while the council conducts further surveys to see whether remedial work is appropriate. 

A newly refurbished library is planned to be opened early next year at the former customer service centre building as part of a major redevelopment of Swinton town centre. This will mean the demolition of the current library off Station Street, with the area then landscaped. 

Building work has already started on affordable new homes, upgraded community buildings and public spaces in Swinton Town Centre. 

This includes building 49 new homes, the upgraded and improved Civic Hall, a green and the demolition of the current library. Under these ambitious plans the existing Council Customer Service Centre will house the new library. 

Assistant Director Rob Mahon, who oversees the maintenance of all Rotherham Council owned 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. Our approach here is in step with similar approaches taken by other local authorities.” 

Users of the library can return their books to any other Rotherham library. 

Rotherham Council is working on the major redevelopment scheme in partnership with Ben Bailey Homes. 

Published: 4th December 2023