Calls to demolish Barrow block of flats plagued by problems
Last updated at 11:39, Monday, 02 September 2013
CALLS have been made to demolish unwanted flats plagued by anti-social behaviour and a sky-high turnover of tenants.
Adelphi Court, a three-storey block of one-bedroom flats in Storey Square, Barrow, has suffered from anti-social behaviour and posed “significant” management issues for Barrow Borough Council.
There has been a recent exodus, with seven of the 12 flats now vacant and another due to be vacated in the next couple of weeks.
That represents a turnover rate of 65 per cent when the norm is only 10 per cent.
And it seems no-one wants to move in because of the flats’ bad reputation.
The council’s housing management forum has agreed to suspend tenancies at the flats while the department considers what to do next – with demolition among the options.
Councillor Mary Irwin told a meeting of the forum on Thursday: “As the councillor for that area, I’ve had a lot of complaints about that place.
In my opinion, I’d like to see them flattened and something else put in their place.”
The council has tried to get new tenants through its choice-based lettings process.
But there has been no interest and it could now consider the option of “direct letting” to people on the 1,700-strong housing waiting list, effectively giving people on the waiting list no choice and allocating them a flat at Adelphi Court – whether they like it or not.
However Colin Garnett, council housing manager, said that doing so could put applicants in an “unpopular” place which is not their
preferred choice and potentially “add to the problems” at Adelphi Court.
Mr Garnett said the flats were well maintained, but were unpopular due to a “combination of factors” and refused to lay the blame entirely with the residents.
He said: “We seem to have got a continuing situation where the quality of life for people living in that community is being
affected by the behaviour at these flats.”
Dennis Woodburn, 71, a disabled resident who has lived at Adelphi Court for several years, says he has been the victim of a burglaries in the past.
He said: “They keep letting headbangers in, it’s full of them.”
A friend who looks after him, who did not wish to be named, said Mr Woodburn should be moved to sheltered accommodation and believes demolition is the best option.
She said: “It’s got that bad now, there’s no going back.”
But Councillor Bill McEwan told the forum: “I don’t think we should flatten them if we could use them again.”
First published at 18:27, Sunday, 01 September 2013
Published by http://www.nwemail.co.uk
Have your say
The solution seems clear to me. Evict the "problem residents" and allow people like Mr Wooburn to live in his home in peace. If the council evict these tenants and the flats are continued to be "well maintained" then surely they will become more appealing to potential residents and rid the flats of their reputation???