Clarify the matters

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With reference to your article (Observer, December 6, Family’s Plea On Roof Leak Misery), Arun District Council wishes to clarify some matters.

It states ‘nothing has been done about the unacceptable situation until the Bognor Regis Observer raised the matter with council officers’.

We would point out the council has in fact been in contact with the tenant and arranged for repairs to be carried out on a number of occasions during 2011 and 2012.

The first took place in May 2011, with other remedial work carried out on May 8, 2011, January 11, 2012, May 17, 2012, and September 24, 2012.

The maintenance contractor involved in these repairs has been consistent throughout.

Reference to a previous contractor ‘folding’ has no bearing on this matter.

A previous contractor did go out of business, but that occurred in 2010 and therefore has no connection with the scaffolding erected at Market Close ‘18 months ago’.

Furthermore, we can assure you arrangements for specialist equipment to attend the property to make a more detailed assessment of the roof condition were in hand before your reporter contacted us.

The tenant was sent a letter dated August 6, in response to her complaint regarding water ingress to the property, which outlined the actions the council proposed to take to remedy the problems with the roof.

Despite the best efforts of our contractor, the repairs undertaken have not proved to be as successful as hoped.

The flat roof in question has had previous repairs but these can sometimes be unsuccessful on large flat roofed areas such as Market Close because water can track over long distances, often far removed from the actual area of water penetration.

Financial constraints prevented us from replacing the entire roof this year but a full replacement had already been scheduled for the 2013 programme of property works.

The council has every sympathy with the tenant of this property and continues to work proactively to find a solution.

Consequently, we are disappointed the overall nature of the report gives an unbalanced and, in places, inaccurate representation of the efforts Arun District Council has made to address her concerns.

Brian Pople

Head of housing

Arun District Council