Health and Safety Directorate

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Bancroft Building

A report has been completed following feedback from staff about the quality of the working environment in the Bancroft Building at Mile End. A high-level summary of the findings is below, and a copy of the full report is available on request.

QMUL has now allocated £3m to be spent over the next three years to rectify issues identified with the existing systems and facilities, and to bring them up to a fully operational state.  

If you would like to see the report and/or need further information, please email 

High-level summary of key findings

Independent consultants - ARUPS and RSK Environment Ltd – conducted a thorough examination of the Bancroft Building over the summer. They identified four critical factors affecting the way in which the building performed:

  • Ageing and obsolete plant and equipment – The majority of the central plant, distribution systems and controls are almost 30 years old and have reached the end of their serviceable life. In these cases, we are looking at where replacement, refurbishment or upgrade of equipment is required.
  • Ineffective planned maintenance – Maintenance has been poor which has led to a deterioration in the physical condition of the plant and equipment and its performance, including the main air and fume handling systems.
  • Increased occupancy density – Staff and student numbers have doubled over the last seven years in some departments. Services and systems will be reviewed and tested to make sure they can meet the demands of increased occupancy. Measures being looked at include increasing the number of toilets in the building, and replacing the obsolete building management system with a system that can deliver stable comfort conditions.
  • Cellularisation of space – Spatial layout changes of larger open plan spaces have been changed to smaller cellular offices and seminar rooms without accommodating these changes in the heating, ventilating and cooling. The space changes in the past have been carried out in an ad-hoc way without reference to the wider impact on heating, ventilation.

QMUL has employed an experienced Project Manager and also commissioned competent external company (ARUPS) to assist us in rectifying the issues in the next three years. The Legacy Work Project Working Group will oversee the work in ensuring that all actions are closed off.

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