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Silsden town hall works one month delay
Refurbishment of Silsden Town Hall will take a month longer than expected due to the discovery of damage to the floorboards.
But Bradford Council has pledged the building will reopen in time for Silsden’s Christmas fair on November 24.
Contractors carrying out £300,000 of improvements discovered wet and dry rot on the suspended timber ground floor.
Councillor Andrew Thornton, Bradford Council’s executive member for environment, sport and sustainability, said the floorboards had to be replaced with a solid concrete floor.
He added: “The cost for this will be funded by the council’s regular repair and maintenance budget.
“We will be able to open the building to allow the Silsden Town Christmas fair to take place, before temporarily closing it for about a week to allow for the building to be finished.”
Coun Andrew Mallinson, who represents Silsden on Bradford Council, saw the discovery of the rotten timbers as a blessing in disguise.
He added: “The town hall would have had to close at some point for these repairs. It’s a saving because the hall is already closed and we’re already doing work.”
The dry rot was the second surprise for contractors, who in August discovered an ornate wooden roof structure and arch window after removing a suspended ceiling in the first-floor main hall.
Instead of replacing the suspended ceiling, Bradford Council decided to ensure the original features remained visible.
Coun Mallinson said: “It’s worth the extra work – it will give the building the wow factor.”
The hall refurbishment includes a revamp of all rooms, including the kitchen, the provision of new toilets, a new lift to the first floor and a fire escape. A ramp at the front entrance will make the building more accessible for the elderly and disabled.
Silsden library will move into the town hall, and the old library building in Wesley Place will be sold to pay for town hall improvements.
The town hall project has attracted controversy, with Silsden Town Council calling for Wesley Place to be retained for the community.
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