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Flagship chief says sorry for problems at Newmarket's Regent Court complex

A housing association has apologised to the residents of a Newmarket flats complex for failing to deal with their fears and concerns.

At a meeting organised by Labour town councillor Kevin Yarrow, Flagship’s head of housing Sam Greenacre told residents of Rowley Drive’s Regent Court : I’m sorry that it has come to us having to have a meeting like this to raise some of this stuff.”

Residents highlighted issues ranging from maintenance problems and concerns about some residents’ suitability for the complex, to flats being sub-let and problems with anti-social behaviour.

Regent Court, Newmarket (Picture: Google) (22586741)
Regent Court, Newmarket (Picture: Google) (22586741)

Mr Greenacre said it was fair to raise the issues, and assured residents:“I will be very clear that we want to make sure we give a brilliant service, we care about our customers and that’s why we are here.

“It’s a shame that it’s come to a meeting to raise some of these issues. It shouldn’t be happening.”

Recent incidents included one where a resident had fallen in her flat and lay undiscoved until a postwoman raised the alarm.

CllrYarrowsaid there had been a death in the complex which had gone undiscovered for several days and asked if a warden service could be re-introduced.

“The issues that have been raised is because there has been a lack of communication,” he said. “People haven’t had the opportunity to speak to a warden who would be here all the time and could pick up on these problems.”

Mr Greenacre said although there was a demand for the warden service, it was cut to a floating service more than a decade ago and then axed by Suffolk County Council last year, due to central government funding issues.

“In the next couple of months we should have an idea of what we are doing – we are reviewing it,” he said, and added the company was not in the ‘support business’.

But town councillor Michael Jeffreys, who was also at the meeting, told him: “In a civilised society nobody should be left having fallen over for two days. It’s about Flagship having processes that will stop that ever happening again.”

Nick Bunn, the company’s operation manager,promised to take action.“We have listened to the concerns raised and have a plan to tackle the issues which we will share with the people at Regent Court,” he said.“A housing officer will be visiting Regent Court on a weekly basis to discuss progress, and to understand any further ideas our customers may have.”

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