Napier House and New Plymouth, Rainham, residents express feelings on proposal to knock down buildings

Tower blocks, Napier and New Plynouth house

Tower blocks, Napier and New Plynouth house - Credit: Archant

Mixed emotions were expressed at a public meeting last night where residents at the “forgotten flats of the Mardyke Estate” were told of a proposal to knock the buildings down.

Neil Stubbings, head of housing services, met with about 70 residents at Napier House and New Plymouth, Dunedin Road, Rainham, to discuss the idea which will be brought to a cabinet meeting next month.

He said: “I can’t pre-judge what cabinet is going to say but the authority is committed to taking another view of the estate.

“It is going to take at least a couple of years but we want to work with you to meet your needs.”

Hundreds of residents signed a petition pleading for the buildings to either be renovated or demolished earlier this year with complaints of having to wear hats and scarves to sleep in the single-glazed flats and concerns about faulty lifts.

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Donna Bristow, who set up the petition, said: “It’s good that we’ve finally been told action is starting to be taken so all we can do now is wait and see.”

But other residents were less keen on the idea.

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Andy Walker, 52, of New Plymouth, said: “I am disappointed at the outcome, because not all of us want to move.

“It feels like we’re going to be forced out of our homes.”

Read next week’s Recorder for the full story.

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