Residents of a block of Portsmouth flats are fed up with floods and leaky roofs

Joe Lister of 6 Portsmouth Road, Cosham Picture: Stuart Anderson
Joe Lister of 6 Portsmouth Road, Cosham Picture: Stuart Anderson
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RESIDENTS are fuming after a flood at a block of flats forced six families to move out.

They say the incident highlights already long-standing problems with the condition of the flats, which are administered by housing association First Wessex.

6 Portsmouth Road, Cosham'' Picture: Stuart Anderson

6 Portsmouth Road, Cosham'' Picture: Stuart Anderson

Firefighters were called to the building at 6 Portsmouth Road, Cosham, on Saturday after a valve underneath a bathtub on the sixth floor burst, sending water pouring through the six flats below.

But that’s not the only water that’s plaguing residents of the building, which has had a leaky roof for the past two years.

Seventh floor resident Joe Lister, 25, has a line of buckets in his corridor to catch the water, and there is a massive hole just above his front door caused by the wet.

He said: ‘This place is disgusting.

They are breaching their duty of care to the people who live here

Joe Lister

‘One moment [First Wessex] tell us the reason they can’t fix it is because they aren’t allowed on the roof and the next they tell us something else. It’s just excuse after excuse.’

‘They are breaching their duty of care to the people who live here.’

Joe said the building was also plagued by problems with mould, humidity and lift breakdowns.

He said all the seventh floor residents wrote a letter to First Wessex at the end of May demanding action, but nothing had been done.

Joe’s partner, Anua Oricchio, 24, said they had withheld their rent for the past two months and would continue to do so until the roof was fixed.

She said all the tenants had children under five, and it was not a fit environment for them to grow up in.

Another resident, who did not want to be named, said they were planning to contact the housing ombudsman.

She said : ‘They don’t seem to take it seriously. They’re so blasé about it so we have to take measures into our own hands.’

First Wessex’s asset management director Hazel Warwick said of flood: ‘Members of staff were on site soon after the incident happened to provide support and arrangements were made for alternative accommodation for affected residents who needed it. There was no way of foreseeing this unfortunate incident.’

‘We have offered dehumidifiers to affected residents and once the properties have dried out we will carry out any necessary repairs.

‘We have written to affected residents to update them on the actions we will be taking and will

continue to provide support and assistance to the resident concerned.

‘We regularly check the condition of our properties and carry out any necessary repairs.’