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Widow wins apology from Islington Council over leak repair

PUBLISHED: 13:38 17 April 2013 | UPDATED: 13:38 17 April 2013

Pic of widower Patricia Marden by damage in her bathroom, she had to wait six months for local authority to come round and fix leak, at Russet Crescent, N7. Picture by Dieter Perry.

Pic of widower Patricia Marden by damage in her bathroom, she had to wait six months for local authority to come round and fix leak, at Russet Crescent, N7. Picture by Dieter Perry.

Dieter Perry

Patricia Marden, 79, who has lived at the family home in Russet Crescent, Holloway, for 35 years, told how the bathroom leak was so bad it could barely be used.

But despite repeated calls to the council since last year – while also complaining about it causing ill-health – it remained in the same state.

Mrs Marden, who pays more than £400 a month for the property, said: “It started in November, so now it just smells awful and has been making me feel very sick.

“I’m too old to be able to cope with the damp, and to have to bend over trying to mop up loads of water the whole time.

“I just find it shocking. We’ve had all the rain and snow recently and it’s all been coming through. It’s been awful.

“I think it just shows how some old people are treated these days. It’s just not good enough.” Cllr James Murray, Islington Council’s executive member for housing and development, said contractor Kier – which is currently embroiled in an investigation following allegations that a former employee created fake work – has been ordered to visit and fix the damage immediately. Save for a second downstairs toilet, Mrs Marden’s daughter, Jennifer, who also lives at the home, said they would have barely been able to go to the toilet.

She said: “I just think at her age it’s very unfair. It’s terrible.

“I think it just goes to show what they think of the elderly.

“They should be looked after better than this. It could have made her seriously ill.

“We were using the downstairs toilet instead but there was no bath in there or anything so we still had to use the one upstairs.

“All that money my mum pays and they weren’t even bothering. It’s a disgrace.”

Cllr Murray said: “I’d like to apologise to Mrs Marden for the delay in getting these roof repairs done, which has been unacceptable.

“We’ve asked our contractor Kier to compete the works urgently this week, and we will be looking into why they have taken so long to fix the problem.”


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