Man, 89, calls for Spa Green Estate footpaths to be repaired after he falls and seriously injures himself for second time
PUBLISHED: 12:25 17 February 2020 | UPDATED: 19:00 18 February 2020
An 89-year-old man has called for the paths on a Finsbury estate to be repaired after he fell and seriously injured himself for the second time in December.
John Peek, who has lived at Sadler House in Spa Green Estate since 1967, was walking to the on-site tenant and management organisation (TMO) office at about 4.30pm on December 12 when he tripped on the uneven, and in places broken, tarmac footpath. He cut his head open and fractured his wrist. He was discharged from hospital on December 19.
John previously tumbled and broke his hip on another of the estate's walkways four or five years ago.
TMO manager Thomas Cooper says he has been calling for the council to repair the footpaths since 2009, and he considers them to be public rights of way because so many people cut through the estate to go to places like Sadlers Wells and the Sainsbury's on St John Street.
Mr Cooper said the TMO doesn't "get a penny" towards the footpath's upkeep and alleges the lack of help from Islington Council "imperils" neighbours' safety.
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But the Gazette understands Islington Council's position is that the paths are the responsibilty of the TMO under the maintenance agreement, but that it has done work on the paths periodically when it's had more money.
Asked what he thought of the estate's footpaths, John told the Gazette: "Judging by my experience not much. It should have been fixed ages ago."
Another Spa Green tenant, Jaqueline Mugridge, who suffer from arthritis, lupus, diabetes and Cushing's syndrome and needs a walking stick to get about, says she also struggles to navigate the paths.
The former Whittington Hospital employee, 54, said: "It's difficult to walk around out here because there's always potholes. Last time I was walking and if my daughter wasn't here I would have gone arse over tit."
She said there are areas of the walkways she avoids entirely, often taking longer routes when going shopping to avoid the treacherous ground.
"It's not an easy ride," she added. "I wouldn't dare go out on my own. I have somebody who cares but there are many people who have nobody, I feel for John."