Tenants & Residents Association (TRA), Pink Palace, Frankham House
(corner of Deptford Church St & Frankham St)
We have been posting about the things that can go wrong with the Decent Homes programme run by the contractors MITIE. Many tenants seem to be relatively happy with the disruption to their homes, having balanced their grievances against their gains.
However, as outlined in a previous post, there are some outcomes that need some serious review. Not everything is great in MITIE land. You are encouraged to take up any complaint with the Liaison Officers stationed in the MITIE compound. But this has not always proved successful. In fact if you're a bit pissed off, you may find yourself forcibly escorted from the compound by a site manager, as recently happened to one resident.
If you have any complaints that have not been happily resolved by visiting the MITIE Site Office in Holden House carpark, or by ringing the MITIE phone number given on the stairwell posters, please come to the Tenants & Residents' meeting (TRA) at the Pink Palace at Frankham House (corner of Deptford Church Street and Frankham St) this evening at 7.30pm, where the MITIE team will be present to answer any questions.
Meanwhile, here's a story from a resident who actually refused the works, written on May 22nd. Our apologies to JP for not posting immediately, but we really thought, at the time, that matters could be sorted out amicably:
"I was told by the team who came to 'measure up' a few weeks ago that they never work on adjacent flats at the same time as the disruption becomes impossible and the workers get in each others' way. However, yesterday I received a letter saying they would be starting on my flat on June 7th and work would take about four weeks. My next door neighbour had a letter in the same post that said her works would start on June 6th! This could be seen as going back on one's word before work has even started but my conversation with Hayley Miller (who signed the letter informing me of the starting date) suggested another possibility, i.e. that the left hand doesn't know what the right hand's doing. Ms Miller didn't know of the promise about adjacent flats.More from JP on June 7th:
Further, the letter mentioned 'rads/rewire'. This was the first that I had heard of this and I still don't know exactly what it entails. I do know that the rewire will probably mean plastic conduits along walls and a finish that will require the added expense (to me) of boxing in or hiding the result and maybe decorating where the work has occurred.
Meanwhile, we would like to hear other tenants' comments on what has happened/is happening in their flats. With this in mind could you post this letter or what you feel are the relevant parts. Thanks JP"
"My kitchen renewal is cancelled. The 'foreman' said that he did not like my attitude and I certainly did not like his, so I cancelled. They went back on their word (or to use my vernacular 'talked bollocks') and I decided it wasn't worth it. May I ask again, what is the general feeling about these works ? I do think it calls for an item on your blog."One of the more general issues now is Parking, reported by residential car owners, with the spaces taken up mainly now by MITIE workers (as well as the usual Faircharm and Lewisham College workers). One resident has commented on how nails and screws are discarded around the car park causing a potential hazard to car owners. Another problem that all estates must endure where MITIE works are taking place is 'trade waste' left onsite over weekends – and mess on the stairs and other communal areas, all through the week, that everyone is having to tread into their flats, whether they're having the work done or not. One or more people are a bit cross that they had to sign a disclaimer in order to allow MITIE workers to ruin the tiled floors that they wished to preserve. And there is still no explanation for why new toilets are located 4 inches from the outside wall leaving nowhere to put your knees if you're taller than 5'5".
Both MITIE and Lewisham Homes are keen to sort out any problems as soon as possible to avoid further discomfort to all residents. Indeed, this blog has been contacted by Simon Taylor at MITIE who would like to sort out any grievances before the TRA meeting. Unfortunately, Simon underestimates the time available to the (unpaid) writers of this blog to do his (paid) job for him.