THE demolition of a derelict building which has become a serious safety concern is being held up by a bat survey.

The Table House, at Wickford Memorial Park, appears to have been vandalised with smashed windows and planks of wood with nails sticking up.

The Aris fence was also damaged and knocked over.

Earlier this month, a group of youths were seen climbing up the building and onto the roof but it isn’t known if they were responsible for the damage.

The building was once a day centre for disabled children, and then a changing room for Wickford Town FC before it became the eye-sore that it is now.

Wickford resident, Brian Dean, 68, raised the concerns with Basildon Council over the state of the building.

The authority has since repaired the fencing and boarded up the windows and main door.

Mr Dean said: “It’s a shame to see it like that as I always walked through this park.

“It’s been several months like this and it’s getting worse.

“I called the council because I was concerned someone would soon get hurt.

“They went to make a start on the demolition a little while back but then said they couldn’t because of asbestos in roof.

“Now we find out it’s because there’s bats in there. It’s gradually deteriorated .”

Councillor David Harrison confirmed the council is carrying out a bats survey before any work is done.

He told the Echo: “The fencing should be back in place now. I visited there on Friday morning.

“The building is going to be demolished we are currently awaiting the outcome of a bat survey before programming the work.

“I have been speaking to officers most of [Friday] morning.

“We will update the public as soon as we have an update.”

Mr Dean added: “They are a protected species and a disturbance may lead to heavy fines.

“Please advise children to take care around this building.”