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Canterbury City Council faces £230,000 repairs bill for The Beaney Museum and Art Gallery

Taxpayers are facing a £230,000 bill to repair one of Canterbury’s most iconic buildings - just six years after it underwent an £11.5 million restoration.

The Beaney Museum and Art Gallery has been covered in scaffolding and sheeting for more than nine months since chunks of marble and sandstone first came crashing down into the hight street.

Now, an investigation has ruled out any sub-standard work during the refurbishment, leaving the city council to pick up the hefty tab for repairs.

The Beaney in Canterbury High Street (11781143)
The Beaney in Canterbury High Street (11781143)

It is estimated the work could take as long as six months to complete.

Spokesman Rob Davies said: “The initial concerns about several sections of the mosaic that forms part of the facade followed an on-the-ground assessment and scaffolding was put up to protect the public.

“It was assumed it was due to a fault in the original work carried out by the contractor during the Beaney refurbishment.

“But, after much closer inspection, and using the contract documents, it became clear these were new issues unrelated to the previous work, which mainly focused on timber repairs to conserve the windows and only some limited mosaic repairs in other areas. As such, there is no contractor liability.”

Mr Davies says a start date for the work has yet to be set.

“The facade is likely to require a customised management plan, given the change in weather patterns, traffic and differential movement between materials,” he explained.

“We intend to carry out a similar level of repairs to those limited repairs done during the refurbishment, given the importance of the building’s instantly recognisable facade.

“This work comes under wear and tear, not as the result of an insured incident, and therefore cannot be claimed on insurance.

“The money will be found to carry it out.”

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