8:55 AM May 25, 2022
Neighbours in Tower Hamlets have been asked to move out and fork out tens of thousands of pounds for building repairs.
Tower Hamlets Homes (THH) has told people living in two tower blocks on the Barleymow Estate that extensive structural work to the building is to cost £100,000, of which they will have to contribute £85,000.
It has also asked residents on the 11th and 12th floors to “temporarily move” to another property while the work is done.
The offer of alternative accommodation was also extended to vulnerable people in the blocks.
THH has apologised for the distress caused by the work, which it says is essential for the building to comply with government requirements.
Residents held a meeting on May 4 at the Veterans Club on Limehouse Street over the issue.
Thérèse Patterson, treasurer for Barleymow Tenants and Residents’ Association, said: “My concern is that the arm’s length management organisation is failing residents.
“The council must intervene and act to ensure THH sticks to time and sticks to budget.”
She urged Tower Hamlets Council to “intervene to support the residents much more productively than it has been in the past”.
A spokesperson from the local authority said: “We are working closely with THH and expect regular updates from the project team to ensure progress is being made and residents are being kept informed.
“The council is under obligation to recover a proportion of the cost of all major works from leaseholders where necessary. We know these costs are substantial and through THH are providing a range of payment options, including an option to buy back properties, to help mitigate the financial cost.”
At the meeting, concerns were also raised because in 2017, THH took on the Decent Homes Programme project and the job is still unfinished.
Tower Hamlets Homes added that residents have been “kept informed of changes through correspondence and newsletters” and many of the delays have been due to national issues such as supply and staff shortages.
THH urged residents to raise any further concerns by booking an appointment with the resident liaison coordinator using [email protected]