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It is probably fair to say that over the next eight days of the Three Choirs Festival, more people will admire the front elevation of Hereford’s 144-year-old City Library on Broad Street than at any other time of the year. This handsome Grade II-listed building, overlooking Cathedral Close, has just undergone a second emergency building operation. Two years ago it was dreaded asbestos removal. This time it is the steeply-pitched slate roof that needed fixing (‘joined-up-writing’ has never been practised at Plough Lane).

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But when the huge and costly (probably no change out of 30K) scaffolding structure was removed just four days before the festival opened, keen-eyed conservationists noted that the 10 stone gargoyles which line the roof’s parapet had been left uncleaned and are seriously stained with grime and algae. The decorative friezes which run across the four-storey building’s main façade are also intricate and unusual. And filthy.

Using the existing scaffold platform, an extra two days expert water washing could have restored these unique carvings in time for the City Library’s 150th anniversary celebrations. That’s if Harry Bramer hasn’t sold it off as multi-storey car park.

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Sadly Gridknocker it brings to the for ......" Failing to plan is planning to fail " or as I heard many times when I was on strike during the Miners Strike a few years ago from the men and women in blue " Who cares who pays - I ain't " 

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Indeed it is a lost opportunity you'd of thought that after all that money spent on minimal roof repairs that at least SC Joseph's out the kindness of their hearts & as a civic gesture would of cleaned them up a bit for the city?!

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