A property firm has been fined after its failure to fix a broken roof for 12 months put its tenant’s health at risk.
A woman living in a two-bedroom flat in Fairmount Road was forced to sleep in her living room after a leaking roof left both bedrooms riddled with damp and mould and caused part of a ceiling to collapse.
The building’s owner, Winchester-based Keystone Property Company Ltd, was prosecuted by Rother District Council after failing to comply with an order requiring it to fix the roof.
In a hearing at Hastings Magistrates’ Court on Friday (December 9) the company was fined £2,700 – reduced from £4,000 due to its early guilty plea – and ordered to pay the council’s court costs of £1,279.94.
Cllr Joy Hughes, RDC cabinet member for housing, said: “For 12 months, the tenant of this property was forced to live in appalling conditions which put her health at risk.
“The bedrooms were affected by severe damp and mould meaning she had to move her bed into the living room as it was the only habitable space left.
“We always try and work with landlords but the company in this case failed to rectify the leaking roof despite being given ample opportunity to do so.
“Landlords have a duty of care to protect the health and safety of their tenants and this prosecution should send out a clear message that we won’t tolerate landlords who fail to meet their responsibilities.”
The company was issued with an abatement notice under the Environmental Protection Act 1990 by the council’s private sector housing team in April, following repeated requests to carry out the work from November last year.
Keystone was given 28 days to carry out the repairs, later extended at their request by a further five weeks, but still failed to begin work before the notice expired.
The firm, of Moorside Road, Winchester, has now fixed the roof.
* Don’t miss out on all the latest breaking news where you live.
Here are four ways you can be sure you’ll be amongst the first to know what’s going on.
1) Make our website your homepage at www.bexhillobserver.net/
2) Like our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/bexhillobserver
3) Follow us on Twitter @BexhillObs
4) Register with us by clicking on ‘sign in’ (top right corner). You can then receive our daily newsletter AND add your point of view to stories that you read here.
And do share with your family and friends - so they don’t miss out!
The Bexhill Observer - always the first with your local news.
Be part of it.