‘Hazards’, evictions and ‘shabby’ treatment – now £1.1m-rated housing association block up for auction

Councillor Paul Yallop had criticised the shabby treatment of residents
Councillor Paul Yallop had criticised the shabby treatment of residents

For sale: a housing association block deemed unsuitable for evicted tenants after the discovery of costly ‘hazards’.

Kingsway, in George V Avenue, Worthing, is available to the highest bidder after Hyde put the 24-bedroom property up for auction.

Its new owners may have to spend considerably to upgrade the £1.1million-rated block, which Hyde previously said was ‘not fit for long-term use’.

Worthing Borough Council identified safety issues with the property in January, 2016 – but by Christmas Hyde was yet to resolve the situation.

Hoping for a festive fix, 16 residents instead received the unwanted Christmas present of an eviction notice.

Despite criticism from Marine ward councillor Paul Yallop over the ‘shabby’ treatment, the notices were not rescinded and in April Hyde said they needed to move residents out to carry out works.

In a statment at the time, Hyde said Kingsway did not ‘meet the standards we expect and is not fit for long-term use’.

With all the tenants now evicted, the property will be available at auction on September 14.

Mr Yallop, also planning committee chairman, said he hoped the council would be at the sale, with the number of affordable homes at a premium.

He said: “What I dont want to see is a developer knocking this down and then bringing an application to planning for private dwellings supported by a viability study which says no affordable units can be provided.”

A council spokesman was asked if the authority would attend the auction.

Funds of £3million were previously identified to boost supply of emergency and temporary accommodation.

The spokesman said: “All tenants have been found suitable accommodation and we are continuing to work with landlords and agents to secure suitable temporary accommodation and have made a number of lease arrangements to support this work.”

The council first became aware of problems following a complaint from a resident about damp.

‘Further hazards’ were identified relating to the means of escape in the event of a fire.

Kingsway served as temporary accommodation, with tenants on the council’s housing register placed in Hyde’s property.

Hyde has been contacted for comment.