A RESIDENT has slammed a housing group after she spent several hours on Saturday night "sweeping" away rain water from a passageway in her home.

Julie Henry, who lives in a ground floor flat in Easterside near Middlesbrough, said heavy rain from Storm Dennis had cascaded from a 'rotten piece of wood' above a communal doorway.

Footage filmed by the Thirteen Group resident shows flooding in the passageway, which leads onto a storage room and into her living room.

She told The Northern Echo: "On Saturday night, water was just coming in, I had to keep sweeping the water out, trying to stop it from going into my front room."

Ms Henry, who has lived on Eccleston Walk since April 2017, claims she had been asking Thirteen Group to replace the 'rotten piece' of wood, fearing a leak, since moving in.

The Northern Echo:

She said: "I got on to Thirteen Group about it after I moved in, they came round last year but nothing happened.

"In the meantime, over summer they did the guttering, installed fascias, and painting but left the one bit that needs doing. It's been like this since the day I moved in."

Over the weekend, Storm Dennis hampered road and rail travel across the country as The Met Office issued a Yellow warning for heavy rain in the region.

Ms Henry, who suffers with a number of respiratory illnesses including asthma, rheumatoid arthritis and low blood pressure, said items in her storage area had been left water-logged by Saturday's rainfall.

The Northern Echo:

She said: "There are things in my storage area, I have a petrol lawnmower that I don't know will every work again.

"I phoned Thirteen, emailed them pictures and sent them videos, and they said 'we will get somebody to ring you back'.

"When I asked them about the items in my storage area, I was told I'd have to claim from my insurance."

Ms Henry added: "It's annoying that somebody has not done their job properly."

On Monday, Labour Councillor the area, Cllr Craig Wright of Middlesbrough's Ladgate Ward criticised the level of maintenance provided by the housing group.

He said: "I'm pleased Thirteen have finally taken the time to visit a vulnerable resident. It is a shame it took the publication of an article in the press to get their attention.

"Too many residents sit quietly in substandard housing and Thirteen are happy to accept this.

"We need a proactive approach to maintenance in Thirteen properties rather than leaving them to get to this state of dis-repair."

'Repairs are being carried out'

In response to Ms Henry's claims, Dave Ripley, director of investment and maintenance for Thirteen Group, said: "Any issues raised over the last three years regarding this property have been resolved in good time.

"On top of this we have invested more than £850,000 over the last year into roofing improvements as part of a wider scheme.

"Following the exceptional storm at the weekend our team has already visited following a customer report of the new damage where we have inspected the building following the damage caused by the storm.

"The subsequent repairs required are being carried out at an appointment on Tuesday (February 18).”