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Exeter's plans for building repairs

Sunday, June 7th, 2020 4:18pm

By Daniel Clark, local democracy reporter

Fix me! Exeter's Riverside Leisure Centre's been looking unwell for three-and-a-half years

Plus CCTV and 'anti-traveller' exclusion measures

Repairs to Riverside Leisure Centre and the Corn Exchange's roofs, upgrades to CCTV systems, and ‘anti-traveller’ intrusion measures to protect parks are measures that Exeter City Council will prioritise when funds allow.

They are among the priorities to ensure council-owned areas are safe, fit for purpose and well-maintained. However, the coronavirus crisis has impacted the council’s income and it is currently losing more than £1m a month.

The council's ruling body has backed £2.7m worth of measures and is to set funds aside, but will only to give approval to proceed once the financial position is secure.

Riverside roof – £2m

The Riverside Leisure Centre is currently undergoing an extensive and technically challenging refurbishment. The roof above the sports hall is not included in the current programme but director David Bartram told the meeting: “The roof is reaching the end of its predicted lifespan and a proactive replacement now would avoid further disruption in the future.”

Corn Exchange roof – £250,000

Following reports of water ingress, a survey of the Corn Exchange roof was completed which identified several areas of damage. The main flat roof over the middle and rear of the building is beyond repair and given the extended lifespan of this building, a replacement roof covering is now required.

Parks anti-intrusion measures – £112,000

A number of bespoke measures for the council’s highest risk sites to protect them from intrusion will be carried out. They are:

Arena Park and Saracens Rugby Club – Replace Saracens' access gate with tamper-proof gate or add guard around lock, additional planting to boundary hedge of Saracens to create rows of plants, hoop fencing to close gap between trees, cycle path and car park and earthworks to steepen slope nearest to skate park to prevent vehicle access
Bettysmead Playing Fields – continue liaison with Devon County Council about cycle improvements 
Cowick Barton Playing Field & Pinces Gardens – Install two drop-bollards at the interface between car park and cycle path. 
Ducks Marsh – Install two drop-bollards across car park to prevent vehicle access onto site beyond university access track
Eastern Fields – As works in Arena Park
ECC Green Tip – Concrete block to be placed in southern gateway at Bromhams Farm Car Park.
Exwick & Flowerpots Playing Fields – New drop-bollard at Station Road / Cycle path with reflectors and cycle path signage, install steel post at Old Bakery Close entrance, install two drop-bollards at New Valley Road entrance, two steel posts at Ennerdale Way entrance, a steel post on corner of Hayes Barton Court and improve padlock protection to height barrier at Western Rd entrance.
Grace Road Playing Fields – Site to be reviewed in line with proposed Marsh Barton Station
Grandisson Court Play Area & Open Space – Low-level bund with hedge planting along Bishop Westall Road.
Hamlin Lane Playing Fields – Height Barrier with lockable lower barrier to be provided at car park entrance, in location of existing gate
Heavitree Pleasure Ground – 100m of new boulders along the length of Lymbourne Ave boundary, to create gaps no wider than 2m.
Honeylands Open Space – Install recycled plastic posts around perimeter of open space where level access is presented of a length of around 105m.
King George V Playing Fields – Height Barrier to be provided at Topsham Road car park entrance, replace rear car park barrier and construct bund around lower car park. An alternative option would see a 150m long Bund around main car park.
Kings Heath Open Space – Boulders to be provided along edge of path at Walsingham Road entrance.
Lakeside Avenue Open Space – New steel fencing to be provided along Lakeside Avenue and Glasshouse Lane to leave an open look but limit vehicle access. Hedge could be provided along Glasshouse Lane and in sections along Lakeside Avenue to reduce cost
Library Fields Open Space – Upgrade access gate on Lower Harrington Lane to tamper-proof lock.
Northbrook Park – Earthworks / Bund around car park to tie into existing steeper sloping sections
Wonford Playing Fields – Eight boulders placed parallel to Chestnut Avenue and install height barrier on Cycle path to permit access to Swan Bungalow.

Future CCTV provision – £225,000

The Council Control Centre runs 24 hours a day 365 days a year and monitors the public open space CCTV cameras, the Homecall alarm system and deals with all out of hours calls into the authority, but the current CCTV system is ageing and key components are now obsolete

A ‘make-do’ option, which involves replacing some core control room equipment but would leave ‘beyond life’ cameras and monitors in place has been identified, which would include repositioning some key cameras to enhance public and staff safety in car parks and providing a link to the police.

The complete replacement of control room equipment which essentially enables cameras to be controlled and footage recorded, renewing specialist furniture as well as replacing existing cameras with HD quality and adding cameras at identified beneficial locations, has been rejected as the indicative cost of £1m is recognised as being unaffordable at the present time.


Exmouth Buoy Store – £95,000

The grade two listed building is currently the operational base for the Harbour Team while undertaking the council's duties as the port authority, the estimated budget is to improve the operational facilities to an acceptable standard and to replace the slate roof covering in line with listed building requirements and to comply with our lease obligation.


Pinces Gardens Gatehouse – £16,000

The gatehouse is the main access way into Pinces Gardens, but the access way is currently closed off as the structure poses a health and safety risk to pedestrians from falling tiles and the roof structure has suffered from repeat vandalism over the years and a survey has identified that the roof covering has failed and the roof structure requires repair.

The council plan to remove the failing roof covering and structure leaving the walls standing and access way open. At a future date the roof could be replaced. The roof removal would be funded from existing revenue budgets for an estimated.


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