This post first appeared on Derby Telegraph. Read the original article.
Work to repair the roof of Derby’s historic Market Hall is finally set to start in January and could last for up to two years.
But long-suffering market traders could not be happier.
This year, Derby City Council has closed the Market Hall on at least two occasions after predictions that high winds would sweep across the region, prompting fears that panes of glass in the roof could come crashing down in the building.
Work was due to be carried out earlier this year but was suspended after steeplejack William Ball, 37, fell to his death in the early hours of January 18 while working overnight at the building.
Since then, the Health and Safety Executive have been investigating the incident, delaying the roofing work. That investigation has not yet been concluded.
(Image: Victoria Wilcox / Derby Telegraph)
Linda Aston, chair of the Derby Market Hall Traders’ Association, said everyone is delighted that a date has now been set for the start of work.
She said: “Scaffolding will be put up to allow a false ceiling to be put in above which the work can be carried out. That means we will be able to carry on trading as normal.
“A similar thing happened very successfully about ten years ago when work was carried out on the roof.”
Metal frames holding the glass panes in place, high up in the curved roof space, have deteriorated and need to be replaced during the work.
Traders were angry when the Market Hall had to close over safety fears this year and many claimed they had lost hundreds of pounds as a result.
Ms Aston added: “This is really good news for everyone who works and shops in the Market Hall and we are looking forward to the job being done. This means we won’t have to worry that the place will have to close at a moment’s notice if it snows or is windy.”
A council spokesman said the authority was committed to transforming the Market Hall. He said: “This includes extensive work to the exterior and interior of the building to enhance and revitalise this historic and iconic city centre grade II listed building.
“The work is due to start in January so that the contractor can progress the necessary planning and design requirements and to ensure traders can operate without disruption, in one of the Market Hall’s busiest periods in November and December in the run up to Christmas.
“Regular meetings are held with the Market Hall Traders’ Association and discussions are already ongoing take to ensure any inconvenience from the improvement work is minimised as much as possible.”