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Grade II listed building, Crescent House, lol

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I know where this is, and its been like it, to the sheer frustration of the resident, for a very long time.  But, it appears some City officers are concentrating more on trying to blame residents for any breaches in fire regulations, instead of taking responsibility for their own failures on issues like this and others. like Stanley Cohen House still having 'plastic' sheets draped around outside walls. 

Well Housing Department Officers are already lining up "Listed Status" as an argument why they can't possibly do anything about fire safety and protecting our lives and homes (see copy of the Emergency Report the Housing Committee will be discussing on Monday).

TERRIFYINGLY, I understand some Leaseholders are now trying to get the status upgraded to 2* - "It will make them carry out repairs" is apparently the idea - errrrr, yes just like being Grade 2 has?

The City's spent the last 20 odd years using listed status as a reason for doing nothing but suddenly they'll change when it becomes  2*?

Like the comment about second marriages this "The triumph of hope over experience!"

David, am confused here.  You say Housing Dept Officers are using 'Listed Status' as an argument against fire safety, yet are sending newsletters to residents, virtually blaming them for breaching fire regulations!  Can you elaborate on this, and I don't know what the Emergency Report says.  Have you a link for it?

David Kreikmeier said:

Well Housing Department Officers are already lining up "Listed Status" as an argument why they can't possibly do anything about fire safety and protecting our lives and homes (see copy of the Emergency Report the Housing Committee will be discussing on Monday).

TERRIFYINGLY, I understand some Leaseholders are now trying to get the status upgraded to 2* - "It will make them carry out repairs" is apparently the idea - errrrr, yes just like being Grade 2 has?

The City's spent the last 20 odd years using listed status as a reason for doing nothing but suddenly they'll change when it becomes  2*?

Like the comment about second marriages this "The triumph of hope over experience!"

Hi Maria

Relevant Committee Paper for Monday's meeting is attached (hopefully!)

See Paragraphs 13 and 19 for example.

I love the bit about educating residents - they might want to start with some of their own Officers and the "Fire Safety Officer" who along with the wonderful Frankham Risk Management Services Ltd. who infall of their "thorough" safety checks never noticed there is a 2inch gap in the glass at the top of the GAH Stairwell fire doors?

In the meeting on 26th June it was fairly obvious that the City 'experts' were clueless about this - as a dumb council tenant in need of fire education I guess it's not my place to tell my betters (whose wages I pay) that it was the 1950s idea on venting smoke from an enclosed area.

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Hi David

Thank you so much for this link.  I also could not believe the bit that said about 'educating' residents on fire issues.  Apart from being extremely patronising, it is a disgrace considering any fires that we had, ie, the electrical boxes in Crescent House, had nothing to do with residents' 'failures', and I do recall a time I contacted an out of hours duty officer, some time ago, extremely worried about masses and masses of newspapers being left in the basement of Crescent House.  It was so high it reached the top of the stairs.  I was ignored, so in desperation I called the police, and in time the newspapers were removed fairly quickly, as being a serious fire hazard.  Did I get any thanks from the COL, well, you know the answer to that!  

Luckily, this evening I met a politician who was visiting a relative, and I told him about the issues the COL have with some of our plants etc, blaming it as being a 'hazard', and he was appalled at the way we have been treated.  He was very supportive, and wrote a lovely comment for me.  It cheered me up to be treated as a human being, instead of something that was not acceptable.

David Kreikmeier said:

Hi Maria

Relevant Committee Paper for Monday's meeting is attached (hopefully!)

See Paragraphs 13 and 19 for example.

I love the bit about educating residents - they might want to start with some of their own Officers and the "Fire Safety Officer" who along with the wonderful Frankham Risk Management Services Ltd. who infall of their "thorough" safety checks never noticed there is a 2inch gap in the glass at the top of the GAH Stairwell fire doors?

In the meeting on 26th June it was fairly obvious that the City 'experts' were clueless about this - as a dumb council tenant in need of fire education I guess it's not my place to tell my betters (whose wages I pay) that it was the 1950s idea on venting smoke from an enclosed area.

Nathan, I have been showing Members around the estate and all are shocked by the condition. John Fletcher has suggested I send a photographic record to all Common councilmen so may I please use your photos and if anyone else can send me any taken in the last couple of months. I have a number but I think I'm so used to seeing it I don't always notice anymore.
The City is about to carry out a condition survey of all its housing stock, and a surveyor will be visiting every tenanted flat. I will let you know when this is happening, as they may not, and ask that everyone makes sure they show them cracks,damp,mould,rot and any other problems. As the survey is visual I want to be sure that they see everything.

Hi David

Again, thank you for the link.  When I read through it thoroughly I was absolutely appalled by something that was written.  On no.6 j. the report talked about residents who do not comply with the fire regulations, and 'persist' in blocking fire exits and walkways.  It then goes on to say that those that do so are reluctant or have 'mental health issues'!  I am absolutely disgusted by this phrase.  I believe its a direct 'dig' against me.  Is the person who wrote this a doctor?  I do not have mental health issues, I have a serious diagnosed psychological illness, which is very debilitating, but I cope as best I can.  The only 'issue' I have is the insensitive way this has been handled.  I have never blocked up fire exits or walkways.  My partner, who has dementia, and needs a wheelchair, has no problems getting around up here, nor does the recycling man, with his large trolley.

They state they have always tried to deal with this matter in a sensitive way!  I don't believe it.  I received a letter, threatening me with removing the 'garden' that is so therapeutic for me and my partner, and other residents, from the Estate Office, by a certain date, which was the day of my best friend's funeral, who was a resident all her life on this Estate, and threatening me with charging me for it.  When I lost my best friend I was so heartbroken I could not deal with things, but the Estate Office said, losing 'a friend' was no excuse for non compliance.  And they call that dealing with it sensitively? 

Also, I have seen a report for Crescent House, where it stated that the area I tend for everyone is 'unauthorised', as I saw the photos in that report. This is a total lie.  A few years ago, a LB fire officer passed the area as being acceptable, and I have 2 letters from 2 senior City of London Management, giving me authorisation.  However, when I pointed this out I was told that I was only given permission because I had very little items in the area as opposed to now.  Well, that is also a lie, as I have lots of photographs, dated, which clearly shows that all the items the City said were not there at the time, clearly are!  The letter from the Estate Office, dated 20 June 2017, again, gives false information about this, and is yet another 'dig' at me.  It is shameful, and bullying.   

The Fire Safety Protocol, no. 14, says that if any resident requests an exception to the protocol, it will be addressed by Head of Estates, the City's Fire Advisor, but no where does it say it will get any medical evidence.  Yet the City claims it operates an Equality & Diversity policy! 

We all want to live safely, and, even a few months ago 2 fire officers, who came to fit a smoke alarm in my flat complimented me on the 'garden' and said access was clear, so there was no problem.  I cannot say just how much distress this has caused, especially, as for years we have been encouraged by the City in their 'Garden Competitions', where I was given prizes for the very thing they now want to take away. 

Am so sorry for getting so upset, but surely there are better things that need to be addressed, that are real safety issues, instead of trying to 'demonise' some residents for creating beauty, that is appreciated by many people?

David Kreikmeier said:

Well Housing Department Officers are already lining up "Listed Status" as an argument why they can't possibly do anything about fire safety and protecting our lives and homes (see copy of the Emergency Report the Housing Committee will be discussing on Monday).

TERRIFYINGLY, I understand some Leaseholders are now trying to get the status upgraded to 2* - "It will make them carry out repairs" is apparently the idea - errrrr, yes just like being Grade 2 has?

The City's spent the last 20 odd years using listed status as a reason for doing nothing but suddenly they'll change when it becomes  2*?

Like the comment about second marriages this "The triumph of hope over experience!"


Of course you have my permission to use the photos, these issues have not developed over night, this is long term dereliction of duty and  neglect.

On the top floor of Crescent house a sizable amount of the woodwork is rotten, and a great many of  the flat roofs leak and have done for years, the repairs have been ignored or bodged for so long that the cost to put it all right is depressing, not to mention the effect it has on a lot of people's moral having to look at it day in day out.

I find it incredulous that the all the blocks on this estate bar GAH have passed the decent homes standard for thermal comfort, as the temperatures on the top floor east facing in Crescent House do not meet these standards, the condensation, damp, leaking roof and ice on the inside of the windows just add to to the frustration with the Corp and the failure to recognise any issue never mind keep the place in a decent state of repair. All that seems to appear are schedules of works, five year plans, consultancies, feasibility studies etc, lots of hot air and gas and no actual action.

Fire safety seems to be an obsession with plant pots sizes, heights of plants, and colour of door mats , meanwhile on the first and second floors of Crescent house were the the corridors are fully internal there are no fire doors fitted to the properties to contain any outbreak inside an individual property, I maybe wrong but I thought these were basic fire regs.

Sue Pearson said:

Nathan, I have been showing Members around the estate and all are shocked by the condition. John Fletcher has suggested I send a photographic record to all Common councilmen so may I please use your photos and if anyone else can send me any taken in the last couple of months. I have a number but I think I'm so used to seeing it I don't always notice anymore.
The City is about to carry out a condition survey of all its housing stock, and a surveyor will be visiting every tenanted flat. I will let you know when this is happening, as they may not, and ask that everyone makes sure they show them cracks,damp,mould,rot and any other problems. As the survey is visual I want to be sure that they see everything.
It's very frustrating, for two years i have battled for better fire safety. Each time we made some progress, plans were made, inspections carried out and not much to show for it in the end. I was working with Henry Jones Cc and John Fletcher CC who were also concerned. Recently things have improved and they removed these stacks of wooded pallets that were dumped in the carpark under our block . Send John the photos and he will do his best.
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Crescent house is Grade 2* already 

David Kreikmeier said:

Well Housing Department Officers are already lining up "Listed Status" as an argument why they can't possibly do anything about fire safety and protecting our lives and homes (see copy of the Emergency Report the Housing Committee will be discussing on Monday).

TERRIFYINGLY, I understand some Leaseholders are now trying to get the status upgraded to 2* - "It will make them carry out repairs" is apparently the idea - errrrr, yes just like being Grade 2 has?

The City's spent the last 20 odd years using listed status as a reason for doing nothing but suddenly they'll change when it becomes  2*?

Like the comment about second marriages this "The triumph of hope over experience!"

Yes Crescent House is, and just look at the state of it!  I think David was referring to the idea where the whole of the Estate was upgraded.

denzil said:

Crescent house is Grade 2* already 

David Kreikmeier said:

Well Housing Department Officers are already lining up "Listed Status" as an argument why they can't possibly do anything about fire safety and protecting our lives and homes (see copy of the Emergency Report the Housing Committee will be discussing on Monday).

TERRIFYINGLY, I understand some Leaseholders are now trying to get the status upgraded to 2* - "It will make them carry out repairs" is apparently the idea - errrrr, yes just like being Grade 2 has?

The City's spent the last 20 odd years using listed status as a reason for doing nothing but suddenly they'll change when it becomes  2*?

Like the comment about second marriages this "The triumph of hope over experience!"

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