Two high-rise blocks face demolition, tenants rehoused – updated

Demolition: Raynville Court and Grange. Photo: Google

By John Baron

Two high rise blocks of flats in West Leeds could be demolished, according to a report to be considered by senior councillors next week.

Raynville Court and Raynville Grange in Armley are among six blocks across Leeds which the council says require are ‘no longer fit for purpose’ and require ‘significant’ investment.

Members of the council’s decision-making executive board will next week decide whether to approve the demolition of the flats and rehouse tenants elsewhere.

A council report states: “As significant investment work is needed to ensure the long term future of the sites, including intrusive and costly strengthening works, an options appraisal was undertaken.

“The recommended approach is for all residents to be rehoused, with appropriate support for those who need it, and for subsequent demolition to clear the sites. This would enable the development of new modern housing in the future on the sites, whether by the council or other parties.”

It will cost the council £5.3 million to empty the flats and rehouse tenants at Raynville Court and Raynville Grange in Armley, Bailey Towers, Brooklands Towers and Ramshead Heights in Seacroft and Leafed Towers in Morton.

In a statement, Councillor Jess Lennox, Leeds City Council’s executive member for housing said: “The demolition of the tower blocks is an important step towards future proofing the council’s housing stock, ensuring that we meet our commitment to delivering good quality and affordable homes for residents.

“However, we understand the impact that this will have on our residents across the sites, and I would like to extend my thanks for their constructive engagement with the council so far.

“We’ve undertaken extensive and proactive consultation with all of our impacted residents and will continue to do so as we are absolutely committed to ensuring any disruption is minimal. We will continue to ensure that all residents are supported through the rehousing process, to see that they are successfully rehoused into homes that suit them for the long term.”

The blocks have been used since the early 1960s and each are ten storeys high with 60 one and two-bedroom flats.

The full council report can be read here. The executive board meets next Wednesday, 18 October, at 1pm in Leeds Civic Hall.

Update: This article was updated at 2.41pm on 11 October with a quote from Cllr Lennox.

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