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C20 Society calls for South London estate to be listed


Sorry, we weren't able to pick up the phone on Friday last when you were asking for comment. Tried reaching you on Saturday and Monday, but obviously you must have already gone to press by the end of Friday. On the estate, 30% of the residents are leaseholders/freeholders and 70% are still council homes. Of the council homes, the council says that 40% do not meet their Decent Homes Standard, which means only 28% of homes are actually non-decent. This includes homes that haven't had a new kitchen for 35 years when they were first installed. The estate only needs a bit of TLC to bring it back to its former glory. And despite the council's poor record of repairs & maintenance, the design & architecture of the estate has created an amazing community and one that has a below level of crime. It is actually a role model community and highly desired by all that live both on and off the estate. The demand for properties is extremely high, because people rarely leave due to the high quality of life and community. Council claims that it is expensive to maintain the estate. However, based on information acquired through Freedom of Information requests, the average repairs & maintenance cost per dwelling on Cressingham Gardens is not even in the top quartile of Lambeth estates. Based on further detailed analysis, it is possible to show that there has been potentially chronic under spend compared to other estates. (All the data is publicly available on the whatdotheyknow website). There are 6 flats that are boarded up that have been like that for approx 16 years. In a recent survey conducted by Lambeth's senior structural engineer, they estimated that it would only cost £260k to fix the subsidence and completely refurbish all 6 flats. Obviously the question is why the council has left these homes like this for 16 years when they claim that there is a housing shortage. Yes, there is a problem with Lambeth Living's ability to complete repairs & maintenance. Apparently they have never made any insurance claims and when we have enquired by FOIs for information about warranties and guarantees on roofs & windows, they claim they have no records that such installations ever occurred. We are still investigating what looks like potentially extreme negligence. Please, don't believe everything that the council says, as very little has stood up to scrutiny and the facts often say the opposite to the what the council claims. Regards Gerlinde Gniewosz co-chair TRA

Posted date

5 November, 2013

Posted time

11:25 am