‘I WISH I COULD LIVE ELSE­WHERE’

Dis­abled mum says her coun­cil house has cat­a­logue of prob­lems

The Sentinel - - NEWS - Matt Jack­son matthew.jack­[email protected]­plc.com

DIS­ABLED ten­ant Rachel Sharp has told how she has en­dured a cat­a­logue of is­sues with her new coun­cil house – after wait­ing al­most six months to get the keys to the prop­erty.

Rachel, of Blur­ton, fi­nally moved into the three­bed­room prop­erty in early De­cem­ber after agree­ing a num­ber of dis­abil­ity-friendly adap­ta­tions with Stoke-on­trent City Coun­cil.

But the mum-of-two says she suf­fered lengthy de­lays wait­ing for the keys – and then dis­cov­ered the cat­a­logue of prob­lems after mov­ing in to the Lit­tle Cliffe Road house.

Rachel says the prob­lems in­cluded: ■ Dam­aged win­dow and kitchen hinges; ■ A hole in the kitchen ceil­ing; ■ A faulty shower; ■ Bed­room win­dows which could not be closed.

The 47-year-old said: “I viewed the house at the end of June and was told it would take eight weeks to get it ready. But in Septem­ber there were no keys, and it was the same story in Oc­to­ber and Novem­ber.

“On De­cem­ber 7 I moved in and and was wait­ing for a stair­lift and grab rails be­cause I have spinal de­gen­er­a­tion. Pic­ture: Mal­colm Hart

“I then found out the small bed­room win­dows won’t close, and the win­dow hinges are bro­ken. We had a leak in the kitchen as well.”

At one point Rachel says she dis­cov­ered the shower in the newly-adapted wet room wasn’t work­ing and had to call the coun­cil.

She said: “I phoned the coun­cil and was asked for a med­i­cal rea­son why I needed to bathe. But the coun­cil in­stalled the shower. That wound me up and I ended up hang­ing up.

“I moved out of a twobed­room flat share in Join­ers Square with a friend, and this is mak­ing me want to go back, but I can’t be­cause I have two daugh­ters.”

Coun­cil bosses say the ma­jor­ity of the work on Rachel’s prop­erty has now been com­pleted.

Coun­cil­lor Randy Con­teh, cab­i­net mem­ber for hous­ing, said: “The ma­jor­ity of the re­pairs that needed to be un­der­taken at this prop­erty have been com­pleted.

“Work to the win­dows is cur­rently un­der­way, and the re­quested handrails are be­ing ar­ranged.we have re­ceived no re­ports of a faulty shower.”

PROB­LEMS: Rachel Sharp in her kitchen with a gap­ing hole in the ceil­ing.

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