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HomeNewsHarrow Crown Court closure extended to April 2025 due to dangerous concrete

Harrow Crown Court closure extended to April 2025 due to dangerous concrete

Harrow Crown Court will remain closed for around a year due to dangerous concrete found in the roof.

Reinforced Autoclaved Aerated Concrete (RAAC) is a lightweight, bubbly concrete used mainly in roofs and sometimes in walls and floors.

While it looks similar to standard concrete, RAAC is weaker and less durable. Its use was popular in construction due to its lightweight and thermal properties.

Harrow Crown Court was closed last August after RAAC was found during upgrade work. Initially, the HM Courts and Tribunals Service (HMCTS) estimated the closure would last six to nine months.

RAAC was commonly used in schools, hospitals, and various public buildings from the 1950s to the mid-1990s, with a recent National Audit Office report identifying its presence in at least 65 schools in England.

An HMCTS spokesperson told the Evening Standard: “We have determined that the work to replace the roof of Harrow Crown Court will take longer than initially expected following further investigation by professional surveyors.

“There has been minimal disruption since it closed in August with hearings taking place in other courts in London and the South-East. We plan to continue this approach until Harrow reopens in April 2025.”

Gareth Thomas, MP for Harrow West, posted via X: “Harrow Crown Court won’t reopen for another year. There’s a record court backlog. So what confidence can victims of crime in Harrow have when they are being made to wait years for justice? My Question in Parliament today.”