Unsafe chimney stops access to GP

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Worry over access to Arbroath Medical Centre in the winter months is mounting as vital repairs to the building above the High Street entrance are yet to begin.

Staff at the GP surgery are concerned about elderly patients, in particular, as the colder weather roles in.

The extremely steep rear entrance is not practical for those with mobility problems who do not have access to a vehicle.

Carol Smith, office supervisor at the practice said: “We understand that four people own the building that requires immediate repairs to the chimney. It therefore requires four people to agree on work being done and time is marching on.

“I really feel for the elderly patients especially as flu clinics are about to start. It is these patients who will suffer the most from not being able to access the surgery from the High Street.”

The scaffolding currently in place around the Clydesdale Bank is not related to this issue. Ms Smith contacted the Building Standards department at Angus Council to see what could be done and was informed that four letters had been sent to the parties who must initiate building works to ensure the chimney and building above the pend is safe.

Ms Smith was told by those working on the Clydedale Bank that if they were to complete soon the pend would still not be able to open as the chimney attached to the other building is in danger of collapsing.

Angus Council said: “The scaffolding is in place to allow repair and restoration of the Clydesdale Bank building. It has also been identified that the building on the opposite side needs repair work, and the pend will remain closed until work is completed on both buildings.”

No estimation has been given on how long the proposed repairs will take, dependent on the individual owners.