Sandal Magna school roof contract: Independent inquiry to be complete within days

An independent inquiry into a controversial council deal with a school roof contractor is nearing completion.

Wednesday, 23rd June 2021, 7:21 pm
Updated Wednesday, 23rd June 2021, 7:22 pm
Contractors fixing the academy's leaky roof were forced off site for several months, but were still paid nearly half-a-million pounds for the time they were unable to work.

Scottish firm McConnell, who were carrying out repairs at Sandal Magna Academy, were being paid £17,500 a week by Wakefield Council despite the work being halted for several months, it was revealed in March.

Council leader Denise Jeffery subsequently declared an inquiry into the matter following criticism from Opposition councillors.

A report on the issue will now be ready "by the end of June", Coun Jeffery told a full council meeting on Wednesday.

It will then be published and debated by elected members at their next full meeting on July 23.

The revelations in March came from a Cabinet report, which said that McConnell had been paid £430,000 worth of public money between October 2020 and March 2021.

That was despite the discovery of dry rot in the building at Sandal Magna, which forced workmen to stop fixing the leaky school roof during that period.

The council later insisted that the clause which dictated they paid the money was "industry standard".Local Democracy Reporting Service