Residents of faulty Northampton flats considering legal action over broken lifts, doors and gates

Several residents have complained at the condition of Bloomsbury House in Guildhall Road.
Several residents have complained at the condition of Bloomsbury House in Guildhall Road.

Residents of a Northampton flatblock fed up with faulty lifts, constantly open security gates and an overflowing bin store are considering taking legal action against the landlords.

Several petitions have been formed at Bloomsbury House in Guildhall Road over the general poor maintenance of the accommodation block. Often they are posted on the notice boards in the building but quickly taken down, residents say.

Lifts are regularly out of service.

Lifts are regularly out of service.

Though some people pay up to £900 in rent for the town centre apartments owned by Metropolitan Thames Valley, many of the 130 or so residents say the communal areas of the building are just not worth the money.

The lifts are regularly out of order and the bin store often left with rubbish overflowing. Since February, the automatic gates to the underground parking area have also stopped working.

Rough sleepers have recently begun bedding down there as a result.

Salesman George Welsford, 26, is among the disgruntled residents leading calls for legal action. Though he owns his flat there, he has to pay a £150 ground rent to Metropolitan Housing as well.

Maintenance of the corridor areas is poor.

Maintenance of the corridor areas is poor.

“I have been a resident at Bloomsbury House since November 2017 – virtually since I moved in, Metropolitan Housing have time and time again shown a complete reluctance to properly maintain our building and fix repairs on a timely manner," he said.

"A broken car park gate, lifts that regularly fault, security doors into the main building that don’t work, homeless people sleeping in our waste rooms and urine-soaked carpets are just some examples of the day-to-day problems we have to put up with.

"Myself and many other residents regularly express our complete dissatisfaction with how we are being treated and our frustration with silly things that could easily be rectified – but it seems the owners of our building just do not care.

"Unless something changes very quickly, we will be considering legal action.”

The car park gate is currently 'not safe for operation'.

The car park gate is currently 'not safe for operation'.

Another resident, Angela Burr, 53, said she had to tell two people to leave the building last week because they were able to walk in through the faulty security door.

"You just don't know who is going to be in there," she said. "It's not a nice place to live."

Metropolitan Thames Valley says it is investigating the concerns raised by residents.

A spokesman said: “Residents at Bloomsbury House have complained to us directly about these issues, so we are aware of them and are investigating fully. In the meantime, we have carried out a number of repairs and are working very hard with residents to fully resolve the issues they have raised.”

Gates to the supposedly secure car park stay open 24 hours a day.

Gates to the supposedly secure car park stay open 24 hours a day.

Remnants of a makeshift bed used by rough sleepers can be seen in the bin store.

Remnants of a makeshift bed used by rough sleepers can be seen in the bin store.