Council plans £11.59m investment to protect iconic buildings and keep residents safe

An update on the £11.59m Backlog Maintenance programme will be presented and discussed at tonight’s meeting of the Place Scrutiny Committee.

The investment will secure the long-term future of both Bolton Central Library and Museum, and the Town Hall.

It will also fund work to ensure council buildings across the borough remain safe and secure.

Like all local authorities, Bolton Council keeps funds aside for essential repairs to public buildings, and the cost of the work will be covered by this existing maintenance budget.

The investment will fund surveys on the security and condition of more than 100 public buildings across the borough, and to ensure council buildings are free from reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete (RAAC).

Funding will also be used on essential repairs to Bolton Town Hall’s roof, windows, and clock tower, along with similar work on the Central Library and Museum building.

Both buildings play a vital role in the borough’s public and civic life, and investing in repairs now will preserve their use for future generations while also avoiding greater costs down the line.

The Grade II* listed Town Hall was officially opened in 1873 and is the centrepiece of the borough’s major events, as well as a place where residents gather to celebrate Bolton’s cultural, sporting, and civic successes.

The importance of the building was highlighted just this year when King Charles III visited Bolton to mark 150 years of the Town Hall’s history.

Together with the Central Library and Museum, the two iconic buildings are an essential part of Bolton’s identity and play a vital role in attracting visitors, investors and even film productions companies to the town.

Bolton Council’s Chief Executive, Sue Johnson, said:

“Bolton Town Hall belongs to the people of Bolton, and as a council we have a responsibility to protect it and make sure it can still be used by the community in another 150 years.

“We also need to make sure our residents are safe, and this investment will guarantee the safety of the Town Hall, Central Library and Museum, and many other buildings that the public use every day.

“We fully understand that £11.59m is a significant amount of money at a time when everyone’s budgets are under pressure.

“However, this a long-term investment in Bolton’s future and will avoid a larger maintenance bill in the future if we do not act now. 

“The work is covered by our existing maintenance budget, which means funds are not being diverted from the essential frontline services we all rely on.”

The council will provide regular updates throughout the project, so residents can track how work is progressing to preserve Bolton Town Hall and the borough’s other assets.

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