New contractor agreed to complete Wolverhampton Civic Hall revamp

The £38 million revamp of Wolverhampton's Civic Halls in back on track after a new contractor was appointed to complete the job.

Wolverhampton Civic Hall has been undergoing a major refurbishment
Wolverhampton Civic Hall has been undergoing a major refurbishment

City council bosses have struck a deal with construction giant Willmott Dixon to continue the revamp of the iconic venue.

It is hoped work, which stalled following the collapse of original contractor Shaylor Group, can now restart as soon as possible.

Council leader Ian Brookfield vowed the the project would be completed "on budget and on time" now the new contractor had been brought on board.

The deal with Willmott Dixon signals a major turning point in the Civic Halls refurbishment, which had already been severely delayed and run well over the original budget. It is hoped one of the city's jewels will be back open hosting major events by 2021.

Councillor Brookfield said an official application for Willmott Dixon to take on the job was expected to go to planning bosses next week

Shaylor Group had been working on the revamp of the Civic before it collapsed

The leader said: "We will deliver - and this is a promise - the scheme on budget and on time so we can get the Grand Slam of Darts back, so we can get major acts and comedians back because the footfall is important to the city."

Wolverhampton Council has come under fire over its handling of the Civic Halls project, which was initially meant to cost £12m before detailed surveys of the building revealed a full-scale revamp was needed, more than tripling the bill. Questions were than asked whether the demise of Shaylor could have been foreseen. The authority insisted it could not.

But leaders hope they will soon be able to draw a line under the mistakes of the last few years and finally deliver a top-class facility for the city.

Councillor Brookfield said: "We know what's been going on with the Civic Hall. But we have moved at ultra-speed over the last few weeks."

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