Leaky roofs and asbestos problems wreak havoc on historic building
The Houses of Parliament need to vacated to carry out urgent repairs, a senior parliamentary committee is set to recommend.
A £4bn restoration project needs to take place as soon as possible to help sort out problems like asbestos, frail stonework and ageing electrics and wiring.
“The roofs are leaking. The stonework is rotting. We need to do a great deal more in fire compartmentation,” according to Lord Lisvane, formerly the most senior Commons official.
“The Victorians left us lots of pictures of statues and all the rest of it but really good plans, so we know where the voids are, we really don’t have.”
He added: “All of the facilities, whether it’s electricity, IT, comms, sewage, fresh water, high pressure steam, central heating, all of that, have just been laid one over the other.
“I don’t think I’m giving away any secrets by saying there are lots of wires, nobody is quite sure where they go.”
The report by the parliamentary committee is set to recommend MPs move to nearby buildings including the Department of Health’s headquarters and the QEII conference centre.
A Downing Street spokeswoman said: “We’re awaiting a report and will respond in due course.”
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