Monday, September 26, 2022

Diary of a Thurrock Council housing repair

WHEN South Ockendon resident, Laura Courtney contacted us regarding a housing repair to her council property, we suggested that Laura put pen to paper and write a blog piece for us.

This is Laura’s experience. We will be giving organisations a right to reply.

Laura’s Blog

"Where to start, firstly my property was started on the 7th of November 2014 and was due to get a new wc and bathroom. I had refused a kitchen due to the fact I had recently had new work tops put in.

I received a letter 9days before works started stating that the works would start then and take 13-15 working days. For the first week it wasn’t too bad except the lack of communication between myself, Mulallys and their subcontractors. I had builders in 3 out of the 5 days and was not kept up to date.

I raised a few issues in the first week and was informed it would be sorted and not to worry by Mulallys.

It was exactly 1 week after my start date the issues started, when ripping out the above flat they flooded the kitchen which in turn came through my ceiling and created water damage. The ceiling was peeling off.

Straight away I contacted Mulallys and they sent out a RLO to take pictures and I was informed they would have to repair the ceiling. I also informed Thurrock council of the damage so they were aware Mulallys were to fix the damage. Since that day there was constant issues.

Being left for 4/5 days with no contact and no workmen in. Left with half my boxing in done so there was screws sticking out of the wall when I have a 6year old son.

My property wasn’t being left in an appropriate state, there was shards of

splintered wood left around and tucked behind toilet and under the bath. The floor was then put down and cut too short so it cannot be sealed properly, radiators were swapped as per the works sheet, but I had to ask, and put in the wrong rooms. To which I was told it had to be that way because of where the pipes are located, I know they can use adapters etc. it was just laziness.

The sink was then dropped at the front as they realised it didn’t meet the pedestal, leaving about an inch gap between the sink and the new tiles, which was just filled with mastic.

The sink then came loose off the wall, due to the poor condition of the walls, the plumber came to rectify this and just wedged an end cap between the sink and wall, which is putting a strain on the sink. The pedestal is still free standing.

I have had no certificate to say the works on the electrics which were undertaken in

a room with an asbestos ceiling, were done under safe conditions.

There is lots of snagging issues and my kitchen was not repaired, all of these issues were raised with Mulallys. They then tried to sign my property off to which I went to the council and complained. This was ignored and I had to get a builder out to inspect the work.

I was told it was substandard and I should ask for an inspector. After this I

refused the workmen access until I got an inspector from the council to come and check my works.

This was 6 weeks since the initial start date. I had the inspector come out, the next day, and he agreed with all I had said and I was reassured the works would carry on after christmas, and all would be rectified.

I asked for a copy of the works to be done, I didn’t receive that till last Friday and it was not correct, yet again I had to get a builder to plan the works and ask for relevant information. Since the inspector came to my property I have had no contact from Mulallys, only the liaison officer at Thurrock council, Karen.

She arranged works to be started Monday just gone, to be fair they did come and reskim my kitchen ceiling, but there was no contact still with Mulallys and no site manager to inspect the works (as there is supposed to be everyday).

Mulallys then tried to tell me the issues in the bathroom and wc were resolved

before Christmas, which was not the case. I informed them I will not take anymore time off work as I have had the 13-15days they said it would take, so Mulallys agreed and said they would be in Monday, Wednesday and Friday this week.

Today is Wednesday and I have had not a single sole in my property or have I had any contact. I chased them to be told the appointment was booked so they should be here, still nothing. The kitchen is currently bare plaster and the issues in the

bathroom and wc have of been addressed at all.

I have been onto Thurrock council about this, tweeting local councillors, spoke to Mulallys, spoke to the inspector and had a builder to check the works yet I am still waiting to have any problems rectified.

I didn’t hear back from most of my complaints including the

council. Today I have directly contacted my local councillor and am

awaiting a reply.

I have taken pictures everyday of the progress to back my story.

So that’s my experience.


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