Man with placard marches on Worthing council offices over house sale delays
A man angry over delays selling his home marched on Worthing Borough Council's offices with a placard today in a desperate bid to get things moving (Wednesday, March 21).
Ibriham Conteh said the sale of his Tarring property rested on its buyers receiving results of a land search survey conducted by the council – and he had grown frustrated when the authority missed its target reply time.
The council admitted staff sickness had led to a backlog, which it was working hard to clear.
Mr Conteh, 44, who demanded answers when he arrived at Portland House, in Richmond Road, was eventually told the information had now been sent.
He said: “I just want answers. I just want to know when we’re going to have the land search.
“It’s not free. We have waited and no-one has phoned to let us know what is going on or what to expect.”
James Appleton, council head of planning and development, came to meet Mr Conteh after he unfurled the placard in reception.
He said: “We have got some technical problems as a result of some staff sickness but we are responding to the backlog.
“There are some (other applications) which will be affected. We are working on the oldest cases first – those closest to the target time. We are trying to catch up.
“The problem is that everyone wants their case dealt with quickly but there is a question where we have to get information from other departments and the county council.
“That takes time – that is why we say 15 days is a realistic turnaround time.
“There is no point doing something quickly to then find out we have missed some key information. We get a whole host of information which all forms part of the process.”
Mr Conteh’s wife, Rachel, said she was yet to receive official confirmation from her estate agents that the information had safely arrived.