18th century Walsall barn to be saved after fire
A Grade II listed Walsall farm building that was severely damaged in a fire is to be saved.
Listed building consent has been granted to clear the debris and secure the remaining structure ahead of a restoration of the building in Bosty Lane, Aldridge.
The disused early 18th century farm barn, which is owned by Walsall Council, suffered extensive damage during the fire which ripped through the building in May this year.
Architects Baart Harris Newall said urgent work was required to ensure the remaining structure does not suffer from a further collapse.
The works, granted by Walsall planners, will involve dismantling unstable walls and brickwork and providing extra support to the remaining structure.
Much of the loose bricks and tiles will be collected and retained to reuse in the restoration work that will follow.
A report into the building structure said: “The fire has caused a considerable amount of damage to the roof fabric and roof structure and to the walls of the East Farm building of the barn in-particular, which is now unstable and unsafe.
“All interior finishes, stairs, and decoration in the fire affected areas are likely to be beyond repair. The fire damage was severe enough to cause instability to the building with external walls out of plumb and considered unstable.”
In their design and access statement, the architects said: “The northern part of the building is in great danger of further imminent collapse, and must not be entered due to significant danger of injury or death.
“The southern part of the range has already suffered catastrophic damage, and there is little high level masonry left to fall.
“I recommend that Walsall Council seek urgent permission to proceed with the proposed controlled dismantling and stabilisation of the listed building, in order to prevent further uncontrolled collapse, and potential loss of historic fabric and significant features.”
The proposed rebuild will involve reconstructing the external walls and roof with as much as the original materials as possible. Windows and iron works will also be replaced with similar materials.
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