6:42pm Monday 16th February 2009
By Jack Royston
A BUILDING firm has come under fire over a programme of home improvements for council tenants.
Some residents of Hutton Lane, in Harrow Weald, say staff from Kier have failed to turn up when expected, missed deadlines and one woman even accused employees of "ruining" the floor of her patio.
Lisa Webster, 26, said: “I told them it was drying and asked them not to walk on it. There was plenty of space for them to avoid it and they put lots of planks on and just walked all over it.
“I complained to three or four people and they didn't seem that bothered to be honest.”
She said the workers damaged the surface of the floor.
Kier was hired by Harrow Council to bring its housing up to Government standards under a scheme known as Decent Homes.
Suitlana Beard, a 28-year-old student, said the work at her house was meant to be done in November but was only finished around a week ago.
She said: “They don't really keep appointments up and they don't inform you when they are not going to come.”
Not everybody in the area is unsatisfied with the company but the problems have worried Councillor Paul Scott (Lib Dem/Harrow Weald) who described them as “very disappointing”.
He said: “Work has essentially been substandard. I was talking to one lady who was showing me around all the windows which weren't fitted properly.
“There's been the quality of fittings in kitchens, appointments missed, delays for months and people being assessed and then not contacted again.”
He added: “The whole thing with the decent homes initiative is that we are supposed to go out and assess areas where the housing is delapidated and to go in and bring it up to standard.
“People have been given more problems than they had to begin with.”
The Harrow Times has contacted Kier for a response and is awaiting a reply.
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