Agenda item

Members' Questions

8.1      Questions relating to urgent business – Council Procedure Rule 16.6(ii).


8.2      Questions relating to the discharge of the functions of the South Yorkshire Joint Authorities (under the provisions of Section 41 of the Local Government Act 1985) and of the South Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority – Council Procedure Rule 16.6(i).


8.3      Supplementary questions on written questions submitted at this meeting – Council Procedure Rule 16.4.





Urgent Business




With the permission of the Lord Mayor (Councillor Colin Ross), Councillor Ian Auckland asked the following questions relating to urgent business, under the provisions of Council Procedure Rule 16.6(ii):-




Q1. Following the Government's order to over 100 schools across the country to immediately vacate buildings made of reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete, how many schools in Sheffield are affected by this order, and how is this Council working to support schools to begin the term as normal?


Q2. In particular, to what extent is Abbey Lane Primary School affected, and what support is Sheffield City Council offering this school?


Q3. Is the Council aware of the prevalence of RAAC in other Council owned or private buildings in Sheffield?




In response to questions 1 and 2, Councillor Dawn Dale (Chair of the Education, Children and Families Policy Committee) advised that no school in Sheffield had been affected by the change of policy by DfE and there had been no need to vacate any buildings. 


She stated that Abbey Lane school had been identified as having RAAC present in limited areas of the school in 2021.  Since then, mitigations had been put in place to keep Abbey Lane open, and work was taking place on site to replace the RAAC panels.  The work would be finished by 1st December 2023.  Temporary kitchen arrangements had been required as part of the affected area was over the school kitchen and these will remain in place until the school was fully handed back in December.





The Leader of the Council (Councillor Tom Hunt) responded to question 3.  He advised that the Council is reviewing its building data for buildings constructed between 1930 and 2000. As a precautionary measure, properties built within this period would be inspected in order to identify any that might have RAAC. Appropriate action to mitigate risks would be taken if RAAC was found.


He continued that RAAC had not been included in routine surveys, but it would be going forward.  He outlined the Council’s 5 phase process as follows:


1. A desktop study to gather information (which was already underway).

2. Looking for RAAC in any building where it could be present.

3. Appointing a Building Surveyor

4. Assessment of RAAC

5. Carrying out remedial works if required


He added that in his view the current situation had been brought about by 13 years of austerity and under investment in the public sector.




South Yorkshire Joint and Combined Authorities




There were no questions relating to the discharge of the functions of the South Yorkshire Joint Authorities for Fire and Rescue and Pensions and of the South Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority, under the provisions of Council Procedure Rule 16.6(i).




Written Questions




A schedule of questions to Chairs of Policy Committees, submitted in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 16, and which contained written answers, was circulated.  Supplementary questions, under the provisions of Council Procedure Rule 16.4, were asked and were answered by the appropriate Policy Committee Chairs until the expiry of the time limit for Members’ Questions (in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 16.7).




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