Rainham residents left without heating at troubled Orchard Village during freezing temperatures of Storm Emma

PUBLISHED: 12:56 07 March 2018 | UPDATED: 12:56 07 March 2018

A block of flats within the Orchard Village estate, Rainham. Picture: Google Maps

A block of flats within the Orchard Village estate, Rainham. Picture: Google Maps

Google Maps

Residents left without heating during Storm Emma believe the faults highlight some long-standing issues at a Rainham estate.

Trevor Mckeever and Nicholas West from the South Hornchurch Labour Action Team tried to help Orchard Village residents with their heating problems.Trevor Mckeever and Nicholas West from the South Hornchurch Labour Action Team tried to help Orchard Village residents with their heating problems.

When the UK was experiencing extreme cold temperatures during Storm Emma, the heating system at Orchard Village in Broadis Way collapsed.

David Harvey, 35, lives on the ground floor of the flats. He said: “Over the bad weather period all hot water and heating went off, and when some people called SSE their addresses were not on the database, so they had to wait three days.

“After this my partner filed a complaint and we received a cheque for £54 and were told we wouldn’t have anymore problems, but the next day, the heating went off again.

“These heating problems have been happening over the last six years, it was only due to the extreme cold weather that everyone needed help.”

Leigh Hayward, 27, from Orchard Village added: “The problem is when we didn’t have heating, we also had no hot water or cold water.

“This is happening more and more, and there’s no long term solution.

“It’s having a debilitating effect on myself and my children, I fear for the older residents of Orchard Village.”

An SSE spokeswoman responded: “We can confirm our Orchard Village site experienced an outage that lasted five hours and 30 minutes on March 2.

“We appreciate that this took place during a period of extreme weather and we are sorry for any discomfort residents suffered during the period it took to resolve the issue.”

Trevor Mckeever and Nicholas West from the South Hornchurch Labour Action Team visited residents and contacted the neighbourhood office to try and find a solution.

Trevor said: “Residents are now informing us that the breakdowns seem to happen when the system is working hard to meet demand.

“Unfortunately not everybody’s heating is working, a previous heating fault has not been rectified which has left a mum and her two year-old daughter with little or no heating for three of the coldest days of the year.”

Georgia Carthy, 23, lives at Bramley Court in Orchard Village and she first reported her faulty heating on Thursday, March 1.

“I was told that my post code was not on the system, also it would take up to three days to get it put on the system and only then could a heating engineer attend,” said Georgia.

“I was then told to go on YouTube to watch videos on how to make repairs to my heating system.

“I was so cold, I had to take my two year-old daughter and myself to stay at a friend’s house.”

Georgia was told that because she had one working radiator, her situation did not require an emergency response.

However because all of the energy was being charged towards one radiator in her home, it routinely turned off.

A Clarion Housing Group spokeswoman said: “Several visits have been made to Ms Carthy’s property and there is heating in the flat, although two radiators are not fully heating so we have arranged for a further visit to be made by an engineer from our contractor. BSW, later today (Tuesday, March 6) to repair these.”

Follwing the visit from the engineer, SSE explained that all Orchard Village supply addresses are set up on their system and they will investigate further to check the addresses are logged correctly on their system.

The SSE spokeswoman added: “As a three day period falls beyond the standard timeframe we must meet for responding to faults we believe that this converation may have taken place not with SSE but with the housing association.

“Unfortunately Ms Carthy had no success in her attempts to get the housing association to attend this fault.

“Despite the fault lying beyond SSE’s area of responsibility, SSE sent an engineer to the property on March 6 and successfully managed to get all bar one of her radiators operational.”

Related articles

Latest Romford News Stories

5 minutes ago

A total of 673 affordable homes weren’t built when they should have been, a report has shown.

Yesterday, 19:04

Firefighters and the RSPCA helped rescue a lucky black cat from a car engine in Elm Park.

Yesterday, 17:17

Young people from Havering who have made a difference in their community attended a prestigious awards event in Hornchurch.

Yesterday, 15:00

I’ve got to admit, I didn’t really know anything about the classic BBC series Goodnight Sweetheart before this week.

Yesterday, 12:00

Pupils and staff at a Collier Row school celebrated the opening of new classrooms and a learning centre with a special ceremony.

Yesterday, 11:09

A Yellow warning has been issued by the Met Office for the east of England as “very strong winds” are expected tomorrow evening and Friday morning.

Yesterday, 10:00

A department store which has been at the heart of a town centre for 130 years, has been celebrating its anniversary.

Yesterday, 08:47

Police officers are appealing for the public’s help in tracing two fraudsters with connections to Romford who are on the run from the law after being found guilty of fraud.


Vauxhall has completed its sport utility vehicle range with the third, and largest, Grandland X. We put the SUV, now available at Tony LeVoi in Romford, to the test.

“The time to repair the roof is when the sun is shining,” so the saying goes. So if some warm weather is making your conservatory uninhabitable, think about replacing its roof with a flat one and adding a roof lantern instead.

The next step in renewable energy could be right beneath your feet as you walk through a Romford shopping centre.

Newsletter Sign Up

Romford Recorder twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read news

Show Job Lists

Education Promo

News from your area

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now