SCAFFOLDING that has “imprisoned” pensioners at a Chester retirement complex for the last three months is due to be taken down.
But celebrations at Arkle Court, on Tarvin Road, Vicars Cross, are likely to be short-lived as the building’s managers have announced a second bout of work is needed to repair the roof.
Residents say initial repairs cost £38,000 – and now Peverel Retirement Ltd has reportedly announced they may shortly face a second bill of £40,000.
Ged Walsh, 67, told the Leader he had been flabbergasted to hear the news at a meeting with Peverel on Tuesday.
“They informed us that the scaffolding imprisoning the pensioners would be coming down,” he said. “But it was shockingly followed by those fatal few words ‘for now’!
“The spokesperson for Peverel informed us this was due to the discovery of new but half expected structural faults and problems.
“The important thing we all needed to know was another £40,000 worth of works and repairs were required; that’s on top of the £38,000 we have just had to pay to be imprisoned, not forgetting these structural problems and faults have been continuous for 14 years costing well over a six-figure sum.
“Scaffolding is coming down only because it will cost us about another £6,000-a-month to remain before work can be agreed and decided who is going to pay, because the residents certainly will not and cannot afford this sort of money year after year and we were never ever informed about ongoing roofing problems when we purchased.”
A spokesman for Peverel apologised to residents for the inconvenience caused by the extensive work taking place on the roof at Arkle Court.
She said work would be paid for through the contingency fund, which has been built up over the years through “a proportion of the residents’ service charge, in line with good practice”.
She said: “The recent work, which has involved removing some parts of the roof, has identified that there are underlying structural repairs needed.
“In order to minimise any additional costs to the flat owners, the scaffolding is being removed this week while we explore how the cost for the new work required will be covered.
“We will be talking to the original developer and to the building’s insurance provider on this and will run a competitive tender for the works.
“We will continue to provide our residents with regular progress updates
on this complex repair project.”
Peverel Retirement operates 1,500 retirement developments nationwide and stresses it is not a care home provider.
The majority of the properties within its sites are privately owned.