Waterlooville over-50s home burgled twice as landlord takes months to fix broken front door

FOR months elderly residents were forced to live in fear in their own homes as their landlord failed to urgently fix their sheltered housing's front door - even after they were burgled twice.

Friday, 23rd August 2019, 7:00 am
Updated Friday, 23rd August 2019, 2:23 pm
Residents at Hart Plain House in Waterlooville chained up the double doors to their building after the main door finally broke, after years of problems. Pictured is the solution residents came up with, with the broken door left off its hinges in the background. Picture: Cheryl Anderson

Computer equipment and a resident's treasured Henry VIII figurines have been stolen in two raids on Hart Plain House, Waterlooville, this year.

The thefts came after the Dryden Close property's automatic front door broke in May and no longer locked itself when it was closed.

Residents' fears came to a head at the weekend as they camped in the house's foyer for a night after the door finally came off its hinges.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

And ignoring advice from landlord the Guinness Partnership, they bolted the house's double doors and took it in turns to sleep and keep lookout.

Resident Cheryl Anderson slammed the firm for 'totally and utterly failing' its tenants, despite complaints about the door dating back to 2016.

'Residents haven't felt safe for a long time because of this front door,' she said.

'I'm 70 years old and as a resident I don't expect to have to take matters like this into my own hands like we did at the weekend.

'Guinness need to realise that there are elderly people here they have a duty to care for, which is sadly lacking.'

After repeated pleas the door was finally fixed this week, but only after resident Cindy Boreham penned a damning letter to Guinness' CEO, Catriona Simons, slamming the firm's complaints process.

In the months leading up to the repair Cindy, who is 64, had been going downstairs to lock the front door manually - sometimes after midnight.

'This has had an impact on everybody and they have all been worried we could get burgled again,' she said.

'I've realised now I made a big mistake moving in here.'

A spokeswoman for the Guinness Partnership said it was 'very sorry' about the fault with the door.

'The door has now been repaired by a specialist contractor,' she added.

‘Every home has an individual, lockable front door but we understand residents’ concerns and will continue to work with them to provide reassurance about their security.’

It is understood police may attend the house's next residents' meeting.