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Talacre: £1m on botchwork

26 November, 2020 — By John Gulliver

THE scandal around the controversial block of flats in Talacre Park, Kentish Town, deepened this week with evidence that One Housing association had to spend £1million to make good botched workmanship before their tenants could move in.

An email sent by a senior manager at One Housing setting out a list of jobs exposes the poor standard of building. It was sent five years ago by the manager but has only surfaced this week.

“As you will be aware,” said the manager “…we share your frustration about the amount of time, money and resources required to bring these properties up to standard.”

The manager points out that the Section 106 agreement with the developer enabled him “to sell the private flats and ignore our concerns about the quality and standard of all the affordable homes”.

He refers to the removal of ceilings, replacement of kitchens, gas pipes, boiler flues, all of which meant One Housing spent more than £1m, resulting in an extended contract.

Whether the costs were reclaimed from the developer remains unclear. Meanwhile, it is understood the council is still trying to claim up to £3m in a special payment owed by the company which is based in the British Virgin Isles, a tax haven.

Two senior councillors, Richard Olszewski and Danny Beales, briefed by officials about the growing scandal, have so far not followed up a Zoom conference with a Kentish Town resident, Nick Harding, who brought the scandal to light many years ago.


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