Swift action to make safe dangerous structures in Axminster and Ottery

PUBLISHED: 11:00 22 September 2018

Emergency services closed Silver Street in Axminster after a lorry collided with a building. Picture: CHRIS CARSON

Emergency services closed Silver Street in Axminster after a lorry collided with a building. Picture: CHRIS CARSON


A potentially dangerous structure in Axminster required swift action from East Devon’s building control team to carry out remedial works to ensure stability and safety

Earlier this month, a fairground ride crashed into the back of a Grade II listed building on Silver Street in Axminster, having rolled from the adjacent fairground site.

Building control officers provided initial advice to the emergency services about the safety of the building, enabling the HGV to be winched out and then liaised with the owner and their insurance company to ensure the building was left safe and secure.

Silver Street was closed for a period of time while remedial works were undertaken, but was reopened the following day.

Later in the week, the Pine Shop in Ottery St Mary caught fire. Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service rushed to extinguish the blaze, with the council’s building control team advising them on the safety of the structure - which has been badly damaged with the roof and internal timbers all but destroyed.

Concerns regarding the stability of the remaining structure, which is largely timber framed with only the gable end wall being made of brick, led to emergency scaffolding works being put in place over the weekend and into last week

Due to the fragile nature of the structure, the scale of the scaffolding had to be increased to lend greater support and to provide space for work to be carried out on the roof, and it now extends into the road.

As a result the road outside the premises has remained closed and is likely to remain closed until the roof can be replaced.

Councillor Phil Skinner, the council’s portfolio holder for the economy, said: “Our building control team do a great job throughout the year, ensuring that new homes, business premises, extensions and other works are constructed in accordance with building regulations, ensuring that they are safe and built to the high standards required.

“What people don’t always realise is the fantastic work they do to support and advise the emergency services with incidents like this and in dealing with the aftermath.

“The works at Silver Street in Ottery St Mary are necessary to make the building safe and so we ask for people’s patience while these works are carried out and hope that the road can be re-opened shortly.”

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