End in sight for more of Rugby's tower blocks

It will take almost a year but Rugby’s landscape is set for another dramatic change as work gets under way tomorrow, Tuesday, to transform Rounds Gardens.

The landmark towers at Rounds Gardens. Photo: Google Street View.
The landmark towers at Rounds Gardens. Photo: Google Street View.

The iconic tower blocks – and associated maisonettes - will join Biart Place as parts of Rugby’s history.

Councils across the country took a fresh look at their high-rise buildings in the wake of the Grenfell Tower disaster and in Rugby, the surveys said it would be better to replace the homes in both parts of town than refurbish them.

The council concluded its options for Biart Place were to spend around £20 million refurbishing the flats or around £23 million demolishing them and building new homes.

For Rounds Gardens, refurbishment costs were £30 million, while demolishing the flats and building new homes was estimated to cost £28 million. While these figures from pre-covid times may have changed, the principle of replacing the ageing structures has remained the driving force for Rugby Borough Council.

Biart Place has already been taken down and now letters have gone out to people living near Rounds Gardens to tell of work starting there.

It’s being labelled a deconstruction as it will be carried out on a similar basis to Biart Place and taken down, rather than blown up in traditional demolition fashion.

O’Gara, the company that did the deed there, has been handed the contract for the new work and will start tomorrow by putting up hoardings, stripping out fixtures and fittings, plus any asbestos and then when scaffolding towers are built, will start to take the blocks apart.

The original vision was that once cleared, 221 new council homes would be built.