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Council step in to secure fire-hit building and re-open key road

City council contractors have worked to stabilise the fire-hit buildings on Newcastle Street to allow the road to be re-opened early next week.


Newcastle Street in Middleport has been closed since April 2024 due to a building fire. The council first engaged with the owners of the building who have been unresponsive and failed to take appropriate action.


Having engaged specialist engineers to see if it could avoid demolishing the building, the city council will now undertake emergency works to make the building safe to allow the road to re-open to traffic.


Over the weekend the council and Unitas staff will be on site to secure the foundations of the building and erect scaffolding. This will allow at least one lane of the road to re-open (with two-way temporary signals).


Alongside the works to allow the road to re-open, the city council are carrying out an independent review. The review will look into each stage of the process both from the council and legal aspects, allowing the council to prevent anything similar from happening again.


A spokesperson for Stoke-on-Trent City Council said: “We are disappointed that the owners of the building on Newcastle Street did not take responsibility for the building, delaying the re-opening of the road.


“With thanks to the specialist engineers, we now have works planned in throughout the weekend which will allow the road to be opened from next week. Once the work is completed, we will be seeking recompense from the owners.


“We understand residents and businesses have been frustrated with the delay. There have been a number of challenges which we have had to take into account and which we are working towards resolving. We will also use this as a learning experience. We obviously hope nothing like this happens again but, if it does, we’ll be in a better position to reduce congestion in the city as much as we possibly can. The review being carried out will mean we can ensure we don’t see a repeat of this.


“We remain committed to preserving and protecting historic buildings in the city, and will take action against owners who neglect their responsibilities.”


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