Petition to the Wheatley Group - Failure to Carry Out Repairs Across the buildings on Westfield Avenue

The Wheatley Group subsidiaries, Lowther & Dunedin Canmore have failed to carried out repairs across the building at Westfield Avenue, Edinburgh. 
Therefore, Living Rent Gorgie/Dalry & their members at Westfield Avenue are demanding that the issues of disrepair across the blocks, affecting the communal areas and individual flats are resolved. 

Failure to Carry Out Repairs Across the buildings on Westfield Avenue, Edinburgh

PETITION DEMANDS

As a resident of Westfield Avenue, I agree with the letter below and demand that Dunedin Canmore and Lowther Homes attend to these issues as outlined below

  1. Balconies must be resurfaced so they provide adequate grip. Proper drainage must be installed as the pooling of water is causing a slipping hazard and is leaking into internal walls, causing dampness. Until this is done they must be kept clean so the build of slippy grime is avoided.
  2. Damp and mould:  We demand an independent survey that can provide individual recommendations to fix tenants’ issues relating to damp and mould. Tenants have suggested multiple sources of the mould, such as damp moving from outside walls to inside ones and the pooling of water on balconies but there has been no investigation. The only step that has been taken is repainting. This fails to deal with the source of the issue as mould resurfaces. 
  3. Protruding drain cover: must be looked at by a qualified contractor and made safe, ideally it would be made flush with the ground so it was no longer a  tripping hazard. 
  4. Service charge: refund all residents for the period when services were not provided 
  5. Communications: we demand that systems be implemented to provide accountability and reliability for both Dunedin Canmore & Lowther residents. Each resident must have a specific staff contact point or housing officer and they must be given contact information for them (email and phone number). We also ask for tenants to have access to all their communications and complaints for their own reference. 

 

Dear Wheatley Group (Lowther and Dunedin Canmore),

Our members, who are residents at Westfield Avenue, are asking for outstanding repairs. 

Your tenants and our members are currently facing issues of disrepair across the blocks, affecting the communal areas and individual flats. These issues have been flagged multiple times by multiple tenants but have not yet been resolved. The issues are outlined below. 

  1. Communal walkways/ balconies do not drain and become a slipping hazard. The material they are constructed of becomes extremely slick when damp and in many places the surface has come off completely. The drainage is insufficient so heavy rain results in pooled water. This is a major hazard for your tenants.
  2. Across the blocks, there are issues with mould, dampness, leaks and improper heating.  
  3. There is an elevated drain cover outside that constitutes a tripping hazard for children and people with mobility issues. One child has already suffered a serious injury. 
  4. Across the block, there was no cleaning during the pandemic, and only some residents have been reimbursed the service charge, and currently cleaning seems to be at best, patchy.
  5. Overall, communications around repair issues have been poor. Our members' complaints are ignored. Conversations are not logged, housing officers are often not available on the phone and emails are ignored.  Contractors turn up without knowing what the job is and often the wrong contractor is sent. 

These issues have been communicated to you but are yet to receive the proper attention. As your tenants, we demand that you attend to these issues as outlined below

  1. Balconies must be resurfaced so they provide adequate grip. Proper drainage must be installed as the pooling of water is causing a slipping hazard and is leaking into internal walls, causing dampness. Until this is done they must be kept clean so the build of slippy grime is avoided.
  2. Damp and mould:  We demand an independent survey that can provide individual recommendations to fix tenants’ issues relating to damp and mould. Tenants have suggested multiple sources of the mould, such as damp moving from outside walls to inside ones and the pooling of water on balconies but there has been no investigation. The only step that has been taken is repainting. This fails to deal with the source of the issue as mould resurfaces. 
  3. Protruding drain cover: must be looked at by a qualified contractor and made safe, ideally it would be made flush with the ground so it was no longer a  tripping hazard. 
  4. Service charge: refund all residents for the period when services were not provided 
  5. Communications: we demand that systems be implemented to provide accountability and reliability for both Dunedin Canmore & Lowther residents. Each resident must have a specific staff contact point or housing officer and they must be given contact information for them (email and phone number). We also ask for tenants to have access to all their communications and complaints for their own reference.

While these repairs are outstanding, the property does not meet the Tolerable Standard covered by the Housing (Scotland) Act 1987. Under the 1987 act, ‘A home may not be fit to live in if:

  • it has problems with rising or penetrating damp
  • it does not have enough ventilation, natural and artificial light or heating
  • it does not have a good drainage and sewerage system

We ask that you agree to a meeting with your tenants so these issues can be outlined and resolved. 

Yours sincerely,
Residents of Westfield Avenue

40 signatures

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