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‘RIDICULOUS’: Garston residents told it could be ‘up to a year’ before they can return home

 Published on: 4th June 2024   |   By: Annabel Stock   |   Category: Uncategorized

Garston residents still don’t know when they will be able to return to the flats they were evacuated from earlier this year.

On February 9, residents of Cygnet House and Plover House on York Way were given nine days to leave their homes to allow investigations into suspected structural defects to take place. Tenants were moved to hotels, the majority of which were in the Watford area, with the support of Watford Community Housing (WCH).

The flats are located above a row of shops in the Meriden, including Meriden Fish Bar. The shop’s owner, Donald Langford, told GARSTONnews that several former tenants have been in contact with him, anxious to know when they can return to their flats. It has been suggested that they could be waiting for up to a year to return.

Donald said: “People are homeless, living in hotels waiting to return.

“It’s just another nail in the coffin for the shops – who wants to go to shops which could be unstable or are at risk of falling down? The shops are losing money week in, week out.

“The rent has gone up almost double. We used to pay £11,000 for a year; that’s now gone up to £45,000. It’s a ridiculous situation.”

A spokesperson for WCH said: “To date, our contractor has been conducting necessary investigation works to determine the remediation works that will be required at Cygnet House and Plover House. This remains a core focus for us, and we will continue to work with our stakeholders as the investigation progresses. We remain committed to liaising with our residents directly to fully support them during this process.”

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