EMS Revisit St Marys DeCrypt

EMS recently undertook an asbestos re-inspection survey at St Marys de Crypt located in Gloucester. The Church in Southgate Street, is part of a £2million Discover DeCrypt project to regenerate St Marys de Crypt Church and the Old Crypt Schoolroom. This project was made possible by a £1.36m Heritage Lottery Fund grant. Work is currently underway to turn the historic Grade I listed church of Norman origin and the Grade II* listed Tudor Schoolroom into an open and accessible place of worship, community hub and venue for arts and culture. This regeneration of the space is expected to take up to 12 months to complete and combines conservation of a historically significant building with regeneration for future generations.

The church also has an underground Crypt with a number of sealed tombs. St Marys de Crypt is the only one of Gloucester’s medieval churches to have had a crypt and unusually to have one of such dimensions, here it extends under much of the floor area.

EMS revisited the site to update the existing asbestos report. The original survey identified a number of asbestos containing materials, some of which were removed at the time and others which were deemed safe to remain in situ but be monitored. With restoration works beginning to get underway on the building, it is important to have an up to date asbestos register.

An asbestos risk register is a key component of the required plan on how to manage any asbestos found in a property. This asbestos management plan (AMP) must contain up to date information about the presence or condition of any asbestos in the building. This register must be updated on a regular basis.  The HSE recommends that this must done at least every 12 months.

It is important to maintain the register when further asbestos is identified or removed or any changes are found to the condition of the asbestos materials, for example if they are found to have deteriorated. The register can be kept on paper or as an electronic record. Paper copies are often easier to pass on to visiting maintenance staff or contractors who will need this information to ensure they know the location and condition of any asbestos before they start work. Electronic copies are easier to up date and are better suited to people who are responsible for managing large numbers of properties or bigger premises.

It was a pleasure to be asked to re-survey such a fascinating and historically rich building. We wish the Discover DeCrypt project all the best for the continuing restoration efforts and look forward to seeing the completed project in the future.

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