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HAB ‘powerless’ over issues at Applewood housing scheme

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Kevin McCloud’s housing firm HAB has said it had ‘no power to manage the construction’ at the DSDHA-designed Applewood housing scheme where residents have reported a catalogue of problems

Residents have complained of a host of issues at the 78-home Stroud scheme including damp, uncapped chimney boards, poorly constructed plasterboard walls, draughty windows, and central heating systems that do not conform to gas regulations.

One resident told the local press she had noticed damp patches in October last year - only a month after the scheme officially completed.

‘The wrong sort of plasterboard had been used and it had been put straight onto the brickwork’, she said.

‘It now turns out the chimneys weren’t capped. I had to have three of the windows replaced because they had been fitted out of square and there wasn’t a proper seal.’

But HAB managing director Mike Roberts, said the housing developer had ‘no legal relationship with the building contractor’ who carried out the work on the homes which were built in partnership with GreenSquare Group.

He added: ‘Unfortunately this position has meant that we have not had any power to manage the construction or deal with the problems that have arisen. We realised how uncomfortable this was some time ago (and well before the completion of Applewood).’

Since the issues arose, HAB has withdrawn from three other partnership projects and has decided to recruit its own construction team.

‘Never again we will allow the HAB name to be associated with any scheme where we do not have control of the construction process’, Roberts added.

GreenSquare, which has opened a temporary office in the local community centre, said it was working to resolve the issues at the development and the scheme’s contractor Markey Construction is currently carrying out surveys on each home before remedial work is carried out.

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