Thu, 09 Aug 2018
A TOWN centre building – from which a cascade of bricks collapsed almost a month ago – has finally been declared safe.
As previously reported by the Newbury Weekly News, shoppers miraculously escaped unhurt when a gust of wind ripped an advertising banner from the building in Northbrook Street, sending some of the facade crashing to the ground with it.
Repairs have been taking place over the past week and a structural engineer has now declared the building safe again.
The council say that Northbrook Street will be re-opened by 5pm today, if not before. Once the closure is lifted, West Street will revert back to one-way traffic (westbound) only.
At the time, witnesses said a child aged around three had been stood on the very spot just seconds before the bricks came hurtling down to the ground below.
The co-owner of Legends Barbers at The Clocktower, Mehmet Ertürk, said that: "I was sheltering from the rain outside the phone shop [Stormfront] and saw a young boy pushing a bicycle with his mother.
"They stopped and he said: 'Look at the rain,' and then walked on. Then there was a gust of wind and a huge crash and all the bricks came down where they had been standing."
Crew manager Keenan at Newbury Fire Station told the NWN: "There was a sudden period of relatively strong wind and rain and, obviously, that's pulled on the fixing, which pulled on the bricks.
"It's very fortunate that no one was underneath.
"We got there and cordoned the area off. We were unsure as to whether any more were going to fall down."