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Grieving family claims housing association dumped personal effects of man who died in their property

Tony Skingle, who died in October, pictured with his sister Liz
Tony Skingle, who died in October, pictured with his sister Liz

A housing association has launched an investigation after claims by the family of a man who died in one of their properties in Exning that his personal effects had been dumped.

Tony Skingle, who was 59 and had worked in the racing industry all his life, was found dead at his home in St Wendred’s Way on October 19. His family, including his mother, Mary, who is 77, journeyed from their home in Coventry to sort out his personal effects but despite having identification and being asked to provide the details for Mr Skingle’s death certificate, they were refused entry to his home by Flagship Housing, which owns the property.

“We all had identification with us and we thought it would be a formality,” said Mr Skingle’s sister Liz. “How wrong we were. We were told we would not be allowed into my brother’s house because there was no will and it might be against his wishes.”

Donna Tully, who is Mr Skingle’s niece, said: “We explained that we lived 100 miles away and that we had the chance that day to start dealing with things but they really were not going to budge. Not only that but they lacked any compassion.

“That was that. We went to see his friends who live in the street and it was so upsetting to be so close to the property and not be allowed access. Not only that but the windows on his car were open and obviously the keys to the car were in his house. We called Flagship and explained but this was dismissed.”

“It is so upsetting for my mum, for me and my brother, we have no keepsakes, nothing to remember Tony by. It’s heartbreaking,” she said.

Andrea Rutterford, head of housing at Flagship, said: “We are extremely sorry for any distress we may have caused the family during this very difficult time.

“We are in contact with the family and are carrying out an internal investigation to establish exactly what happened.”

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