9:00am Wednesday 14th March 2012
A FURIOUS housing association tenant blockaded a building site in a dispute over his leaking roof.
Darren Box, 31, parked his car outside a contractors’ machine plant in Tarrett Drive, Colchester.
He stuck a finger-painted sign reading “Fix the dripping roof” to the side of his red Toyota MR2.
Mr Box claims the loft in his new housing association property, in the same road, has not been properly insulated, causing condensation to drip close to electric wires.
He also said mould had started growing in the damp conditions.
He added: “It should have been repaired five days after I reported it. It is dangerous, as there are electrics and light fittings up there. I was woken up at 3am by the dripping. So, as I had warned them, I blocked off the plant equipment.”
He reported the problem to his landlords, CHP, on February 20. They said the property developers were contractually obliged to fix it.
Mr Box said after several complaints to both firms, he took matters into his own hands, blocking in Persimmon Homes contractors working on his estate. The stand-off lasted for two-and-a-half hours.
He said: “The idea was to get them to tell their bosses they have lost more than two hours work. They threatened me with the police, but I didn’t budge. I wanted to make my point.”
He pulled up outside the plant entrance yesterday at 6.30am.
Police were called by the site manager, but told them it was a civil matter.
Denise Kent, CHP director of commercial services, said: “All new properties are subject to a 12-month defect period.
“During this time repair requests are remedied by the developer. CHP is liaising with the resident and developer to ensure the matter is resolved as soon as possible.”
Mr Box, who moved in on February 1 and lives alone, said he hopes to buy the property when it becomes available to him.
Persimmon Homes Essex construction director, Grant Bauckham, said he did not believe the problem was associated with the construction of the property, but promised to continue investigating it.
He added: “We have had three engineers out to the property on three occasions to establish the cause and find a solution.
“Persimmon will be sending further independent contractors in.”
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