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Braithwaite House tenants vote to keep heating switched on all year

Residents say they were left to "freeze" when heating switched off

16 October, 2020 — By Calum Fraser

Residents from Braithwaite House confronted housing chief Diarmaid Ward

Tower block tenants hailed a victory this week after the council committed to providing heating all year round.

Residents in Braithwaite House, Bunhill Row, previously told the Tribune how they had been left to “freeze” as the heating in the 19-storey tower was switched off between May and September.

They confronted housing chief Diarmaid Ward at a scrutiny committee meeting in July, challenging the claim that neighbours had been consulted on the proposals several years back.

Bunhill ward Labour councillors Phil Graham and Troy Gallagher called for the tenants to be balloted and the results showed that 71 per cent of those who voted were in favour of heating all year round.

“It’s a huge relief,” Susie Luke, who lives on the top floor, said. “It’s a small victory for Islington’s tenants.”

The vote means that an extra £1.69 a week will be added to household bills. Letters will soon be sent out by the Town Hall with the results of the vote and explaining the changes.

An Islington Council spokesman said: “Residents who are on a low income, over 60, or have a disability, a health condition, or children under 16 may be entitled to £140 off their energy bills via the Warm Home Discount, and additional support to reduce energy bills.”

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