Toms Close – Stop the bulldozing

Toms Close – Stop the bulldozing



Defend Council Housing calls on ALL people to show support and solidarity with ANY resident(s) of a property in Toms Close that don’t wish to move or sell there home. BY stating your intentions to attempt to stop any attempt to force them out and start demolition of the homes, if the residents consent to our support

Date to be put when known

Link to the event to show support


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2 Responses to Toms Close – Stop the bulldozing

  1. Yvonne Chambers says:

    I was a tenant of toms, close northampton borough promised a great deal of like for like promises but all the time I was told one thing then when they came to me it had all changed I feel I was treated badly by the borough and the only person that tried to help was Kelly and her hands were very often tied by the borough committee they made my life very difficult in all kinds of ways my partner lived there for 40 years and he had furnished all the kitchen bathroom and extra toilet All the house was immaculate I have had to leave a lot behind because I took a bungalow instead of a house because I live on my own I have left all my memories to start again at 62 and I found it very distressing I never want to do it again they gave me £4,700 but you can’t put a price on happiness.

  2. Toms Close
    It don’t really come as a shock to me that people feel that NBC is not playing a fair game at Toms Close, it seems that lots of things have been promised are NOT in reality taking place.

    IF YOU know off things happening that you feel are NOT being done, THEN let other people know, This is what the people were told on the 7TH Feb 2014

    THIS is what I know you were told.

    In response to your request regarding information which is connected to the Council Housing stock at Toms Close, Northampton, please see the attached pdf disclosure document.

    Much of the information you have requested is exempt from disclosure. This is because the information relates to ongoing discussions with both council and private residents in Toms Close. Disclosure of more detailed information would likely prejudice these discussions.

    Basicly what I know is that ALL the council tenants in a letter dated 7th Feb 2014 were told the following:

    You have been left this letter today following the home visit by one of your local housing team to discuss the future of Toms Close.
    This letter contains the details of the information that have been discussed with you along with names and contact details of the members of staff who will be able to assist you with any further queries or questions you may have at any time.
    As you were informed, the Council are required by Government to improve all of our
    properties so that they achieve the Decent Homes standard by 31 March 2015.
    Your home and the other properties on Toms Close are classed as non-traditional
    housing stock in that they were built using what’s called an Airey design (concrete post construction) and are listed in the Housing Defects Act 1984. As a result they require a substantial amount of work to both the structure as well as the internal facilities to achieve this standard.
    To determine exactly what work is required we commissioned a specialist company to undertake a building survey of a vacant property on Toms Close. This company produced a detailed specification of works that would be required to make each property ‘decent’ and to upgrade the structure to ensure that the properties would have at least another 25 years ‘life expectancy’.
    We then asked two other companies to submit estimated costs per property to undertake these specified works. Similar tenders were received from each company with the estimated cost per property to deliver the required improvements being £89,000. Both companies indicated that this would be a minimum value with the actual costs likely to be higher.
    These investment levels are not economically viable on properties of this type and value and it is with regret therefore that I have to advise you that we will need to transfer all existing tenants to alternative Council accommodation or support you in finding your own alternative accommodation.

    Unfortunately, the condition of the properties leaves the Council with no viable alternative but we will make every effort to ensure that we support you throughout the process.
    Attached to this letter is more detailed information for you to read and consider and if at any time you wish to speak to someone or arrange another home visit you can telephone
    01604 838299 and ask to speak to Kelly Nicholls, Lucy Lilburn or myself.
    Yours sincerely,
    Neil Barks
    Asset Strategy Manager
    Northampton Borough Council

    Supporting You
    Moving home can be a daunting experience. Many of you will have different needs and requirements. We want to do our best to help you. So Kelly Nicholls your Housing Officer and Lucy Lilburn your Senior Housing Officer will be there to help you.
    They will assess your needs and decide on the level of support and help that you need – as well as advise you on the type of home you should be looking at moving into.
    When they have helped you find a new home that you are happy with, viewed it and signed for the tenancy, they will visit you to discuss the rest of the moving process.
    Either Kelly or Lucy will be in regular contact with you throughout the whole process. They will explain what will happen and what to expect, complete any paperwork with you and answer any questions you may have.
    They will help you with everything associated with your move – including contacting utility companies etc. and one of them or a colleague will be there on the day of your move to make sure everything runs smoothly.
    If you have a disability or any special requirements that affect your mobility, they will arrange for Jane Mold our Occupational Therapist to visit you. We can then look at what appropriate accommodation is available for you and what if any adaptations may be required to support you in your new home.
    Kelly or Lucy will identify properties so you won’t be forced to bid yourself. Once a suitable property has been identified and an offer made and accepted, they will visit you to agree a moving date and arrange the removal company.
    On the day you move, a Housing Officer will be on site, checking the removal company has arrived and that things like cookers and washing machines have been disconnected.
    Once you’ve moved, Kelly or Lucy will visit you in your new home to check your cooker and washer have been re-connected and to collect your keys.
    If you have to sell or move out of your property you are entitled to the costs and expenses reasonably incurred in vacating that property.
    Home Loss Payments
    If you are living in the property you may be entitled to a home-loss payment in addition to any other compensation due. The home-loss payment is an additional sum to reflect and recognise the distress and discomfort of being compelled to move out of your home. If you are re-housed this will not affect the amount of compensation paid.

    Disabled Persons
    If the home of a disabled person has been adapted to meet his or her special needs, the compensation to the occupier or the landlord may reflect the cost of providing or modifying a similar dwelling.
    What you’ll need to do
    There are some things that you will need to arrange yourself. We will pay for them so you will just need to keep hold of any receipts so that we can pay you back.
    These include:
     removal expenses;
     legal fees arising from the acquisition of a replacement property;
     stamp duty arising from the acquisition of a replacement property;
     surveyors fees arising from the acquisition of a replacement property;
     survey fee and costs in connection with the transfer of an existing
     mortgage or raising a new one;
     special adaptations of the replacement premises;
     altering soft furnishings and moveable fittings and fixtures to fit your new home;
     disconnection and reconnection of services telephone, electricity, etc;
     forwarding of post (for a reasonable period);
     incidental costs of acquiring replacement property;
    Some Questions and Answers
    1 I like where I live. Will I be able to find a new home in the local area?
    Your Local Housing Team is here to support you to find a new home. We will look at your housing needs and do our best to find you a home in the area you want to live. However,
    there will be a limited supply of suitable homes in some areas.
    2 I want to move away from the area – will I be able to?
    Yes. As long as the property meets your housing needs, for example a one bedroom flat for a single person, you will be able to do so.
    3 I have a child – will I qualify for a house?
    We will assess you all individually. Generally, if you have a child or children that live with you permanently and are under 18 years of age at the time of allocation, you would be entitled to a house.
    4 Will I be limited to properties owned by Northampton Borough Council?

    5 I am a single person living in a two bedroom property – will I still qualify for a two-bed flat?
    A single person or a couple will qualify for a one or two bedroom flat. Depending upon your circumstances however, you will need to be aware of the Government’s recent
    Welfare Reform Bill that has reduced housing benefit where bedrooms are not being
    Many single people and couples currently live in two or even three bedroom homes – and many want to move to something similar. But from April 2013, what has become known as the ‘bedroom tax’, came into force. This means that if you receive housing benefit, and have one or more spare bedrooms, you’ll have to pay around £10 extra a week for each room from your benefits.
    This may mean tenants in receipt of benefits having to pay more if they under occupy
    their home.
    Losing a bedroom might not be something you want to do – but it’s better than not being able to afford to pay the bills once the Government takes away part of your benefit.
    So if you’re single or a couple living in a two-bedroom property, with your rent paid
    through housing benefit, please think carefully before telling us that you want to move to a similar sized property. You’re also more likely to get a one bedroom flat sooner than a two bed flat.
    6 Will I be able to have a pet in my new property?
    This will depend on the property you move to. We will take into account whether you have pets or not when completing your application for re-housing. Pets are not allowed in highrise and are only allowed in low-rise flats that have access to their own private garden.
    7 I have specialist equipment – will this be moved to my new property?
    8 Will empty properties be protected from break-ins and vandalism?
    We will make sure all empty properties are made secure to try and prevent break-ins,
    vandalism and squatting. As the area empties we will look to increase security on the site.
    9 I have a disability / special requirements. Will these be taken into account?
    If you have a disability or any special requirements that affect your mobility, the Team will arrange for our Occupational Therapist to visit you. We can then look at what appropriate accommodation is available for you and what if any adaptations may be required to support you in your new home.

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