Mansfield: Heating impasse angers daughter

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A concerned daughter fears for the health of her elderly mother after trying unsuccessfully for more than five years to get a landlord to carry out ‘essential’ repairs to the family home.

The house on Welbeck Street, Mansfield is owned by Huthwaite-based Metlane Lettings and leased to 81-year-old Brenda Northing, with the rent paid by Mansfield District Council.

Daughter Wendy Neville is angry that the house has become run down in recent years since the death of her dad - Mrs Northing’s husband - and a list of improvements needed includes a new front door, the replacement of crumbling coving and polystyrene tiles and an electrical re-wiring.

But top of the list of concerns is a lack of double glazing, which means Mrs Northing has to pay up to £230 a month on heating to keep warm during winter.

Mrs Neville has waged a long battle in a bid to get the issues resolved and has exchanged countless letters with Mansfield District Council and spoken to Metlane lettings on a host of occasions.

But so far the only major action taken is to improve the path leading to the back door after Mrs Northing slipped and broke her hip.

“I have a letter dated 18th July 2012 saying the windows are classed as a category one hazard because of excess cold and that the time scale for action is four weeks, yet all this time has gone by and my mum is facing another cold winter with rocketing bills she can’t afford,” said Mrs Neville.

“I am totally amazed and disgusted that landlords are allowed to let tenants live in properties like this that are not up to standard.”

Coun Derek Evans, Portfolio Holder for strategic housing at Mansfield District Council, said: “It certainly not right that anyone is forced to live this way.

“We have received a number of complaints. Much of the work has been carried out, while we are due to visit the house again this week.

“I have been to see Mrs Neville and I have promised her I will personally keep an eye on the situation.”

Chad contacted Jonathan Rye of Metlane Lettings but he declined to comment.