Call for investigation into Worthing Pavilion roof work

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A METAL roofing company has called for English Heritage to investigate work being carried out to replace Worthing Pavilion Theatre’s old roof.

The zinc cladding roof work on the Grade II listed building is currently being installed by specialist roofing contractor FMJ, at a cost of £600,000.

Peter Young, who runs Surrey-based Peter’s Roofing Contractors, claims the “execution of the current cladding work is not consistent with the original style and workmanship”.

In 1976, Peter was part of the team which replaced the zinc cladding to the lower dome, work which still remains.

Peter, 54, said: “As owner of a roofing company that specialises in zinc and copper work, I feel suitably qualified to comment on this new work.

“The execution of the current cladding work is not consistent with the original style and workmanship. The zinc has no beaded edges at the eaves which on the original were for aesthetic appearances as well as providing rigidity to the edges to avoid wind lift.”

Peter, whose company did not submit a bid to carry out the work, added: “The tender package for the zinc roofing would have stated all zinc work must be carried out to match the original in materials and workmanship. Simplifying the necessary work has probably halved the contract time, but at what cost?”

Bill Geddes from the Worthing Society said: “We are alarmed to have received this information and hope English Heritage respond to the concerns as the pavilion is a listed building, which means work must be in keeping with the original.”

An English Heritage spokeswoman said: “English Heritage takes the traditional detailing on listed buildings seriously. In the case of the pavilion we have not yet been able to investigate the question of workmanship that Mr Young raises, but we will be doing so shortly and speaking to the council about it.”

A spokesman for Worthing Council said: “We confirm the contract works currently in progress are as specified, administered and supervised by our engaged building surveying consultants MSA Chichester, with all works currently undertaken by our appointed specialist roofing contractor FMJ. The work is specified to meet the requirement of Zinc Roofing Codes of Practice and best practice guidelines, and in appreciation of the fact that this is a listed building.”

FMJ was unable to comment before the Herald went to press.

Work on the roof is scheduled to be completed by the end of November.