Pensioners use kettles to wash after boiler breakdown in sheltered housing

Coun Stuart Porthouse outside the Anchor Housing Oakfield Court sheltered housing off Silksworth Lane, East Herrington, Sunderland, where residents are having problems with heating and hot water.

Coun Stuart Porthouse outside the Anchor Housing Oakfield Court sheltered housing off Silksworth Lane, East Herrington, Sunderland, where residents are having problems with heating and hot water.

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FED-UP old folk were left in the cold after a heating breakdown at their sheltered housing block.

A number of residents living at Oakfield Court in East Herrington, say they had to resort to boiling kettles to provide hot water for washing.

One resident, who did not want to be named, said: “We had no water for a week. It’s just gone on and on.

“When it wasn’t sorted over the weekend I gave them the benefit of the doubt because of Easter and the holidays.”

Residents contacted coun Stuart Porthouse, who represents St Chad’s ward, about the problem.

Coun Porthouse is also Age UK Pride of Place Advocate for the elderly and vulnerable.

He said: “To be fair to Anchor Homes I think they appear to be doing as much as they can to sort this out.

“Some of the residents weren’t able to bath for days. But they have had problems with the electrical and cable suppliers.

“My responsibility is to my constituents and, of course, I want to make sure that they are all right.

“Problems with power have been happening for six months now. It is unacceptable that elderly residents are expected to put up with this situation.”

Nicola O’Connor, district manager for Oakfield Court, assured residents and their relatives all was being done to sort the problem from happening again.

“We contacted the energy providers as soon as we were aware of the problem.

“We will remain in constant contact with them until it is resolved and are speaking with them regarding compensation for our customers.

Ms O’Connor added that portable heaters were installed in the rooms of those residents affected.

“We have apologised to our customers,” said Ms O’Connor.

“I have also visited them to see if there is anything else we can do.”

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