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7th Jul, 2022

Fears Rose Bank Gardens walls not adequately insured

Malvern Editorial 16th May, 2014 Updated: 20th Oct, 2016

CONCERNS have been raised Malvern Town Council is substantially under-insured on the walls of Rose Bank Gardens and would have to fork out thousands of pounds if they collapsed.

Last week the council agreed to set aside nearly £2,000 to seek professional advice on what the reinstatement costs of the walls would be as well as carry out a structural survey to identify any defects.

The level of insurance has become an issue since work was carried out to replace a small wall which collapsed due to heavy rainfall in January.

Cover amounting to £15,287 for the Wells Road wall and £50,956 for the one facing St. Anne’s Road was secured when the council obtained the 99 year lease from Malvern Hills District Council, but it is feared repair costs would run into six figures if either one collapsed.

The council has also agreed for officers to investigate the circumstances surrounding the signing of the lease and to report back to the next meeting of the policy and resources committee.

Coun Patrick Mewton said: “It is essential we get an expert to give us this valuation, the costs of reinstating the walls could be substantial so we need to know how much to insure for and know what state those walls are in.”

“It is alarming that when the lease was signed as far as I am aware no councillors have seen it and know what we are responsible for.

“The costs of reinstating those walls maybe too much for this council to afford. We need answers about this, answers we are yet to have.”

Mayor Julian Roskams added: “What this case has highlighted is that when the council enters into a significant new contract or lease, it is essential that councillors should have the opportunity to review the terms and satisfy themselves that, among other things, the contract represents value for money and does not pose a risk to the public purse.

“It is essential that we learn any lessons there may be from the way this particular lease was negotiated.”

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