NIHE ‘sorry’ for works delay

Paul Frew MLA with Eric Gilmore in the garden of his Cromkill Road home. (Submitted Picture).
Paul Frew MLA with Eric Gilmore in the garden of his Cromkill Road home. (Submitted Picture).

The Housing Executive has apologised to a local family for “an unacceptable delay” in carrying out external works to their property.

DUP MLA Paul Frew had taken up the case of Eric Gilmore and his family who, he said, had been “promised” by NIHE that various external works would be undertaken at the Cromkill Road property before they moved in at the beginning of April.

These, he said, included that their garden would be cut down to a managable state and that unstable or dangerous structures within the garden would be removed.

In a statement to The Times last Tuesday, Mr Frew said: “Eric has been trying to communicate with the Housing Executive since he moved in at the beginning of April. The grass is now up to an adult’s head in places, both front and back but, more importantly, there is a shed on the property with a collapsed roof which is made of Grade A Asbestos. This needs to be removed in a managed safe way.

“The shed is surrounded by a jungle of overgrown trees and brambles making it nearly impossible to gain access to the extent of the property. Even the neighbours have grown tired of this situation, some having put in complaints to the Housing Executive.

“This is a totally unacceptable situation and is completely unfair on the Gilmore family,” said Mr Frew.

“How dare the Housing Executive impact on a family’s life like this when it could all be resolved very quickly and easily. It’s long gone the time for Housing Executive to make the cut,” the Assemblyman said.

Responding to his remarks on Wednesday, a Housing Executive spokesperson told this newspaper: “The Housing Executive apologises to the family and accepts there has been an unacceptable delay in carrying out the external works to the property.

“We have been in contact with the tenant and work will be carried out as a matter of priority. Work to clear and cultivate the rear and front garden, which will include top soiling and seeding, will commence tomorrow. We have also arranged for the shed to be removed by a specialist contractor.”