On 18th March I met with Henrey Quinnell the chair of the Pathmeads Walworth TRA to discuss how things are going. Pathmeads is the housing association which brought the properties sold by the Church Commissioners in 2006.
Several constituents have contacted me complaining that the mechanisms for rent reviews are not working correctly, with some properties receiving much higher rent increases than others. It also seems that some officers at Pathmeads proposed high rent increases which were then lowered by negotiation with the individual tenants.
Another concern which people have raised relate to: the forms and written material from Pathmeads; tenants who have appealed against their rent increases and actually found their rent increase had actually gone up after the appeal, thus deterring appeals from others; and the repairs service and also the fact that no money has been spent on wholesale repairs on the Walworth Estate.
There seems to be a lack of a planned investment programme for the estate, and one is desperately needed, particularly for the windows.
There is also a need for Pathmeads to run a high profile benefits take-up campaign to try and drive up claimant levels to assist income to pay for rent increases.
I have contacted Pathmeads to raise the concerns of my constituents and will continue to ensure that the agreements which were made when Pathmeads took over the peoperties are adheared to.