Leicester

Leicester council offices: Controlled demolition of New Walk HQ

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Media captionThe New Walk council offices were demolished in a controlled explosion in Leicester

The demolition of two "crumbling" former council offices has taken place in a controlled explosion in Leicester.

The New Walk Centre was destroyed in what is known as a "double blow-down", which took just seconds to complete.

The demolition of the two 1970s tower blocks, which have been part of the city's skyline for 40 years, was recorded for people to watch.

The former Leicester City Council headquarters had been declared unsafe in 2010.

Hundreds of people cheered as they watched the demolition from outside an exclusion zone.

'Ugly' building

Staff were gradually moved to other buildings, with the city mayor's Peter Soulsby among the last to leave in June.

A witness said after the demolition: "I feel like we're on a film set or something. It's quite strange to walk down here and see it all down in the rubble."

Another bystander told BBC News: "I won't be sorry to see it go. It was ugly. I'd like to see a nice green space there now."

Displaced residents and businesses were offered temporary accommodation at the nearby Leicester Tigers rugby ground, where they were able to watch the demolition on a big screen.

Image caption The two office blocks were reduced to a pile of rubble in a few seconds

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