Leicester medieval landmark closed after cracks found

Magazine with scaffolding
Image caption Experts said the extent of the problems had not been fully assessed

An historic Leicester landmark has been closed "to ensure people's safety" after cracks were found.

The Magazine is a Grade I-listed stone gatehouse, built in about 1410 and used to store ammunition in the Civil War.

While not normally open to the public, it was due to be part of a Heritage Sunday open day.

Scaffolding will be set up to assess the extent of the problem but city council officials said it was unclear how long repairs would take.

Cracks were discovered in the parapet, along with damaged stonework on the main staircase.

The building, more properly known as the Newarke gateway, gained additional significance in recent years as Richard III's body may well have been carried through it after the Battle of Bosworth in 1485.

Describing the decision as "a shame", Leicester City Council's heritage manager, Sally Coleman, said: "During our recent routine repairs, some additional damage was discovered, and in order to ensure people's safety, we've taken the decision to close it to visitors while we investigate further.

"Once we know exactly the extent of the work needed, we'll have a clearer idea of how long the repairs will take, and when it can reopen."

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