Hatfield tower block residents could get more than £6,000 for moving out

PUBLISHED: 06:59 30 October 2019

Residents living at Hatfield tower block Queensway House could get more than £6,000 for moving out  if demolition plans go ahead. Picture: Charlotte McLaughlin

Residents living at Hatfield tower block Queensway House could get more than £6,000 for moving out  if demolition plans go ahead. Picture: Charlotte McLaughlin

Archant

Residents living at a Hatfield tower block could get more than £6,000 for moving out - if demolition plans go ahead.

Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council's most senior councillors will be asked on Tuesday to approve plans to demolish and redevelop Queensway House.

It follows a consultation with residents and leaseholders, from August 12 to September 23, which outlined several options for the building's future.

Most - 55 per cent of residents and leaseholders - were in favour of demolishing and redeveloping the tower block.

This view was broadly shared by commercial tenants, like the Asian supermarket Welcome, Hatfield Citizens Advice and Resolve's Community Café and Night Shelter, if suitable alternatives were offered.

Welwyn Hatfield Borough Councils most senior councillors will be asked on Tuesday to approve plans to demolish and redevelop Queensway House. Picture: Charlotte McLaughlinWelwyn Hatfield Borough Councils most senior councillors will be asked on Tuesday to approve plans to demolish and redevelop Queensway House. Picture: Charlotte McLaughlin

WHBC has already begun helping some residents find accommodation and will continue until everyone has a new home which meets their needs.

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As part of this process, council tenants are entitled to a statutory - set nationally by the Government - home loss payment of £6,400.

But this figure could be a lot more, as the council has paid £7,000 to £8,000 for decanting its past tenants.

Welwyn Hatfield borough councillor Nick Pace, executive member for housing and community, said: "The recommendations outlined in the report will give us an opportunity to develop new council homes in this part of Hatfield, which we know is a popular location for residents with its close proximity to local businesses, the train station and other transport links.

"With exciting redevelopment under way elsewhere in the town, the site would be looked at as part of the shared Hatfield 2030+ vision to secure the town centre's future prosperity to 2030 and beyond."

Major works to the block - including the planned sprinkler and extractor installation - are also likely to remain on hold if the proposal goes ahead.

A fire warden, which has been put on 24-hour-watch since July 21 since Queensway's fire doors were deemed unsafe, will remain in the building.

Design work on what the building could be turned into would commence after a decision is made.

A cabinet meeting to discuss the proposals will takes place at the council's offices in Welwyn Garden City from 7.30pm on Tuesday, November 5.

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