THE roof has, quite literally, fallen in at Minehead Town Council.

Having only moved into the new offices in 2017, the council will now not be able to use the premises for a couple of months as repairs are carried out.

The damage happened sometime between Friday and Monday when the office was closed due to the snowfall, when pipes burst in the unoccupied flat above the Summerland Road premises.

“Fortunately the damage only really affected the kitchen, the toilets and some old files. The Minehead Town Council computers and recent files are on the other side of the premises,” said Cllr Jean Parbrook.

Somerset County Gazette: SHUT: Minehead Town Council's offices are out of action

Council staff have temporarily relocated to the Children’s Centre, which means they have a base, but will not be open for face-to-face meetings for the time being.

Two meetings have been cancelled this week, with loss adjusters coming in to evaluate the situation.

“We would like to thank Somerset County Council who have agreed to host our staff at the Children’s Centre in Alcombe for the time being,” Cllr Parbrook said.

“We have undertaken a clean up operation but it is hard to say when we will be able to go back in, I expect it will a couple of months.

“To be honest, while obviously it is frustrating, we have been quite lucky in that the damage could have been a lot worse.”

In the coming days the council will be redirecting its phone line so that it can handle queries on the usual number, 01643 707213.

It moved to the Summerland Road offices in April last year, having sold the iconic Town Hall for more than £300,000 in 2015.

The town council agreed to sell the building due to the costs it would take to repair the building, and put in disabled access and toilets to the grade II listed building on The Parade in Minehead town centre.

A spokesman for the council said: “It is not practical for a body which is supposed to represent the area to be based in a building which excludes a section of society, namely disabled people, because we only have staircase access to the chamber.”