I’ve received a very interesting email from a long-time resident of Humphries House in Brownhills. Humphries House, readers will no doubt remember, is the last of two remaining system-build tower blocks in Brownhills, and along with it’s partner, the much smaller Severn House, it was recently reclad and renovated by it’s owners, Walsall Housing Group.
The renovations included rewiring, new communal heating system, new windows and so on, but a major component was the recladding. Insulation material was pinned to the exterior face of the tower block, and then overskinned with render. This render seems thin and easily punctured, and the insulation material seems to be harbouring mice which enter residences through unsealed holes in the walls.
A very concerned resident of the block, who understandably wishes to remain anonymous, emailed and told me the following:
Since the cladding has been finished around Humphries House, some damage has ocurred round by the front door. The damage is worse than this now as this photo was taken the morning after it happened about 8 weeks ago. We are still awaiting a repair. We are concerned about damp getting into the insulation.
Also we now have a problem with mice in the block. The little buggers are burrowing through the cladding and entering people’s flats through old kitchen ventilation holes which weren’t blocked up properly. All Walsall Housing Group do is give people the number for pest control and get the residents to phone. Tenants share the view that this is Walsall Housing Group problem and they should get the pest control people out.
The people who live in Brownhills or visit here think the block is lovely now it’s been painted, but when you get up close its a mess.
A Concerned and fed-up resident
I’d like to draw this to the attention of Walsall Housing Group, who trumpeted these improvements as a new dawn, only to have the water pump fail in the block a few days after completion, leaving residents without water for a very long period.
Tenants of Humphries House are quite right in their expectation that repairs should be carried out promptly where necessary, and for the mouse problem to be dealt with professionally and once and for all. It’s not too much to ask; after all, were the mice found in a commercial kitchen by Environmental Health Officers, the authorities would have strong words to say on the matter.
I look forward to Walsall Housing Group sorting this out properly, instead of dismissing complaints and passing the buck.