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More Welsh councils give schools all-clear after RAAC checks

12 Sep 2023 2 minute read
Reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete

Lewis Smith, local democracy reporter

Neath Port Talbot and Bridgend councils have released statements confirming they have not found any reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete (RAAC) in their schools.

RAAC is a lightweight form of concrete which was used in the construction of schools, colleges, and other buildings from the 1950s until the mid-1990s.

The Health and Safety Executive has warned that RAAC is now beyond its lifespan and could collapse without notice.

Its presence has been confirmed in a range of public sector properties across the UK including in over 100 schools in England.

Just two schools in Wales, both on Anglesey, have been found with RACC so far.

Last Friday (8 September) Education Minister Jeremy Miles revealed RACC has not been discovered in any other schools in Wales to date.

On Monday, both Rhondda Cynon Taf and Merthyr Tydfil councils gave clean bills of health to their schools.

Final inspections

A statement issued by Neath Port Talbot Council said: “We can confirm that no reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete (RAAC) has been identified in any of the county borough’s school buildings.

“While we do not anticipate discovering RAAC in other council managed buildings, we are currently conducting our final inspections. We will keep all parents, pupils, staff, and residents informed of any potential future developments.”

In a similar statement, Bridgend County Borough Council added it had found no trace of the material in any of its schools.

The statement said: “Bridgend County Borough Council (BCBC) can confirm that no reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete (RAAC) has been identified at any school in the county borough.

“While BCBC is reassured that RAAC has not been found in the construction of any of our schools, officers will continue to undertake final checks where alterations or modifications have been installed over time.

“This is to ensure that RAAC was not utilised in such modification works and, with the majority of these inspections already concluded, we fully expect not to find any RAAC in our schools whatsoever. We will make sure all parents, pupils, staff and residents are kept up to date with any potential future developments.”

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