Sunday, July 21, 2024

Housing surgeries – “We are listening” says council

THURROCK’S new housing portfolio holder says she was “delighted” by the success of her first tenant surgery.

Cllr Val Morris-Cook was speaking after the surgery at South Ockendon’s Forum on Saturday (14 July).

“This is something that’s way overdue,” she said. “We politicians should be getting out there talking directly to tenants and listening to their concerns.

“Thurrock has always been good at running tenant consultations and tenant participation events, but they tend to be officer-driven and I wouldn’t be at all surprised if ‘the usual suspects’ weren’t involved every time.”

She said: “I wanted to hear directly what tenants have to say and to assure them, one-to-one that they had been heard and that I would do all in my power to help. I’m delighted that so many people came along.”

Cllr Morris-Cook was joined on Saturday by Housing Director Barbara Brownlee, a representative from contractor Morrison FS, representatives who specialise in dealing with Black Mould and other senior council staff.

Around 65 tenants attended the surgery which ran from 9.30am until 2pm.

Cllr Morris-Cook added: “The main issues were Morrison repairs service and black mould – things that should have been sorted out a long time ago.

“I think those who came along left knowing that we care about them and Thurrock’s tenants and that I want to ensure they have the best possible service. That is my aim, that is what I am working towards and that is what I will be judged by.”

The next tenants surgery is planned to cover the Tilbury and Chadwell St Mary area. It will be held in September with date and venue to be arranged.


  1. Great idea but the “Mould and Morrisons Repairs” have been reported to the council continuously, by the residenst, the ward councillors and Mrs Lodge, why is the new Police Person Cllr Morris Cook now getting involved, stop talking about the problems and get them fixed, you dont need endless surgeries and talking sessions.

  2. It was good to see all the councillors together, and the normaly faceless managers and supervisors from Morrisons, I made the point that morrisons were faceless, also they constantly missed booked appointments or sent the wrong person around to put the problem right, I asked for somebody to come to my home, because our toilet water cistern was falling off the wall, and a half inch water pipe was keeping it from crashing onto the floor, I made upto seven phone calls to ask why nobody had arrives to a emergency repair, if excuses were repairs then, morrisons would be fantastic, I had to get a councillor involved in the non repair, they turned up one night unannouced, and pushed it against the wall and put mastic glue on to it, I was also told that if morrisons dont consider that a repair is an emergency, then they could charge for the call out, what a bloody cheek, after be kept waiting for Seven Weeks for an Emergency repair, a friend of mine who lives in a bungalow which hasnt seen a repair from its last tenent, as Black Mould in every room, it is being caused by rising damp, and failing brick work letting water into the property, several Morrison men have called to the property, and failed to see the Black Mould or the damp in every room, I really hopeing that after the meeting last Saturday at the forum, Morrisons and the TBC and our ward councillors really do improve and help us the tenents, becuase the TBC has really been missing the mark when it comes to repairs to their tenents, we all pay our rents and council tax so that we can live in our council houses safely and securely, free from Black killing Mould, Mrs Dee Lodge and her husband have fought along struggle to get, the Killer Black Mould into the publics eyes, and now thats its been agreed it is a Hazard 1 killer, everything should be put into ridding all of the properties of this killer, and Morrisons.

  3. It is good to see these surgeries now taking place, it can only be a good thing for both Thurrock Council and the residents of Thurrock. I was there on Saturday and was content to see so many people coming forward with their complaints. I must give full praise to Barbara Brownlee for her sincere attempt to get to grips with this and also to Val Morris Cook and Kerry o’prea (Housing Manager) I know all took time for the residents even though Barbara was officially on holiday and not a working day for Val and Kerry. I am all too aware that residents have had a tough time for many years with the bad attitude toward residents from Thurrock Council employee’s and this meeting was an eye opener for those who were listening. Lets hope this is the start of things to come, so lets not critisise but encourage the good work that will be going on in the background for the good of the residents.
    Deirdre Lodge
    Awareness Campaigner/Aspergillus/Mould

  4. It is Ok TBC saying that they are listening but actions speak louder than words, lets see if they actually do anything with the information that they have gathered from the surgeries or is this just a PR exercise.


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