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Eight months of scaffolding moving around the same street

(20 Posts)
makeitstop24 Tue 31-Jan-17 16:30:00

Back story and videos here

From August 2017 to today (and no end in sight) we have had scaffolding moving from one building to the next (seemingly random) and left up empty for months.

It went up November 2016 next door, a man sanded some wood and painted, it came down yesterday. Today it has gone up again opposite (lost count on if its even the same homes they are putting it up on)

Ours was up from August to October, again, to sand and paint some wood.

This seems to be a 'thing' in Islington

I have contacted a few agencies today, not least to find out if this will ever end but it looks like we'll be moving as first baby coming in February and I can't live here (and my baby certainly can't) with the dust and noise constantly. I am already very concerned by the health effects the stress is having on me, my partner and my child.

I have never seen anything like this, has anyone seen anything like this? Am I being unreasonable to expect scaffolding to be sorted and dealt with (and the maintenance, or non maintenance in this case) to be a thing that lasts a couple of months, not eight or the better part of a year?

As I said, if it was structural integrity I could perfectly understand. But this is a year of scaffolding and all it's noise and dust, to sand and paint some wood.

makeitstop24 Tue 31-Jan-17 16:32:27

I have also been dealing with hyperemesis for 30 weeks, and yesterday discovered I'm anemic. So there really has been no escape from this, but to lay in my bed feeling like death, listening to this and breathing in dust.

Niloufes Tue 31-Jan-17 16:39:59

Let me get this straight... you are complaining about all the scaffolding and building work going on in your street but you have had some building work done too? I feel for your health problems, but you are totally being unreasonable. Why can't others get jobs done too?

Kiroro Tue 31-Jan-17 16:44:15

Um, yeah, you are being U.

Property does need to be maintained.

makeitstop24 Tue 31-Jan-17 16:47:42

I would rather not of had cheap paint fumes and lead paint sanding outside my windows for 3-4 months, with men at my window whilst being sick, trust me.

I understand the landlord has a right to do what she wants, and even put up rent during. I have a right to be pissed about it too and leave. Obviously timing of getting a huge deposit together is perfect.

Meanwhile, the apartment inside is falling apart.

mambono5 Tue 31-Jan-17 16:54:35

properties are not being "maintained" if the scaffolding are left unused for weeks or months

I haven't got any advice, sorry, but not BU, it sounds horrific. If there is work being done, I am not sure there is anything you can do as long as they keep to whatever legal hours apply in your area.

makeitstop24 Tue 31-Jan-17 16:58:02

I could even deal if we would of had a letter, and possibly even a proposed date that the work will actually end.

And not taking 3-4 months to sand and paint each building with this noise constantly.

Niloufes Tue 31-Jan-17 17:03:45

Okay, makeitstop, I apologise, you didn't say you were renting. Must be difficult.

Scaredycat3000 Tue 31-Jan-17 17:19:02

cheap paint fumes and lead paint sanding Really? You do realise asbestos is often in old paint/wallpaper. Far more worrying.
You are being a little hysterical, these are genuine concerns, but so are transport fumes, eating to much processed food, mould growing on internal walls, etc. You simply need to manage the risks, the day they paint, if you even notice, shut the windows and maybe go out if needed. As for the stress of scaffolding, WTF are you on about? It's not pretty looking out of your window though scaffolding for years on end, with no control, only for them to do the same again a few years later, but not stressful. It does sound like the scaffolding company are storing their scaffolding round buildings, which is wrong, but not stressful for you.

makeitstop24 Tue 31-Jan-17 17:25:58

As many know, pregnancy can = very bad insomnia as well. So there really is no chance to catch up with any sleep. Pile on antenatal depression, coming off effexor (worst antidepressant known to man) and its been fabulous.

I asked my midwife if I could take Piriton in the night just to actually sleep, so I don't have to sleep at all in the day to catch up (which I can't anyway).

These videos are in big part to demonstrate my home environment right now and keep a record in case of any problems when moving out. I was up 4am-7am, and slept through that noise for a couple hours today at 36 weeks pregnant.

Yesterday was another fun filled day as baby stopped moving, and I have had false labour for weeks. Thats where they discovered his heart rate is erratic, and so is mine. So now I have no idea how long my iron has been on the floor. I wasn't told my blood results from two weeks back until going in emergency, which I'm thankful I did now. It may of effected his development, so I'm worried about that too.

We will be leaving ASAP, you can imagine the hell my partner has had to deal with with my moods all over the place, and this has not helped. I guess this is just to document the whole saga. I wish we had left in 2016, now I'm wondering how my child will have been effected from the stress.

To make a point, we are not yuppy types as I know people like to judge from the post code. We moved here because the rent was very very good at the time, the lease transferred over from my brother, and it was close to work.

When we moved in, the rent was very reasonable (with some major downsides for the cheap rent, like no kitchen counters or sockets). And still would be (for the area), if we wasn't living with this daily. We will be leaving for the blissful burbs shortly.

makeitstop24 Tue 31-Jan-17 17:31:29


I don't care about how it looks, at all.

I care about the chronic fumes and noise over a year. These builds have very old single glazing and as the windows were fixed, they now don't actually close properly (thick paint). I will be on my landlords case as soon as my iron kicks in and I can function again.

I'm just ranting. It has taken me eight months to finally start losing it.

barinatxe Tue 31-Jan-17 17:56:17

It is very common. When I used to rent my landlord had scaffolding up for a couple of years (not London but still expensive). He'd bought the building and was converting it into flats - one by one, and personally to save money. He didn't live there, so what did he care about the affect on the neighbours (or his tenants - it's a landlord's market, after all). On that street there were about 20 houses, and in the entire 8 years I lived on the street there was never a day when at least one property didn't have scaffolding up.

It's pretty shit for people living there but if everyone else seems to be erecting scaffolding, painting and generally causing a nuisance, people won't be particularly concerned about inflicting the same torture themselves.

It is pretty easy to get scaffolding erected - unlike planning permission, because it is not permanent and permits are issued for a specific length of time. Therefore it makes sense, if you need to get a permit, to get it for as long as possible "just in case". It makes financial sense to leave the scaffolding up, too - much more cheaper to leave it up for a couple of months than pay someone to take it apart for a few weeks then rebuild it.

As a tenant you really only have two options - put up with it or leave. The landlord probably doesn't care because he will probably have tenants fighting over his property. The law doesn't care, and the neighbours certainly don't.

witsender Tue 31-Jan-17 18:02:05

Scaffolding companies often leave it in situ until it is needed elsewhere as it saves on storage, which sucks. Does your landlord own any of the others? Are there any signs on the scaffolding?

However if it isn't on your property itself I can't see why it bothers you that much.

makeitstop24 Tue 31-Jan-17 18:09:20

Landlord only owns this building, and she was a little angry that it was left so long without information.

Starting to think the council have some sort of street regeneration thing going. Just would of been nice to let the residents know and perhaps give some sort of projected date/year of completion so people could of left already. We stuck it out, but after eight months its too much now.

Its also something that the council seems to do here, just much more extreme and prolonged

makeitstop24 Tue 31-Jan-17 18:10:45

Sorry, six months. Brain is very much not working anymore.

pipsqueak25 Tue 31-Jan-17 18:21:11

scaffolding moving around the street i'd speak to the local authorities about this, scaffolding cannot expect to rock up where it wants and cause problems, the council need to rehouse it in emergency housing if need be, grin

FourKidsNotCrazyYet Tue 31-Jan-17 18:23:43

Has it not just become white noise by now anyway? When I was pregnant with DC1& 2 (Germany) we lived next to Army ranges, 24 hour shooting and live firing range. Also a very busy tank road with the fumes and deafening noise from many tanks going by. You just get on with it. There are people living with actual war around them. I think we're very lucky in the grand scheme of things.

Merrylegs Tue 31-Jan-17 18:34:52

Is it an Islington thing then?

I am in Westminster and there is frequently some kind of scaffolding/works going on in the street but there is always a sign on the scaffolding giving the nature of the work, length of time it will take and a contact number. This way at least you feel there is some control/someone accountable.

YANBU. Good luck with your move!

makeitstop24 Tue 31-Jan-17 18:56:43

Thank you so much MerryLegs smile (is that from black beauty?)


I think its that the pregnancy has been very rough as well, honestly. I probably would be in a better state if I could of slept and eaten properly to deal with the situation. Being full of anxiety and not being able to take meds or access counselling has kind of left me in a very bad way. It has just caught up now and i'm concerned about falling into postpartum depression.

Plus not being able to leave and escape from sickness. Only a few more weeks eh

rubybleu Tue 31-Jan-17 19:50:00

It's an Islington thing. Quite a lot of terraced houses in Islington are council flats or ex-council where Islington Council is the freeholder. At any given time they are undertaking cyclical works at the expense (and certainly not the choosing) of leaseholders.

Islington doesn't take down scaffolding promptly because it's subcontracted to scaffolding companies (Griffin is often used) and the scaffolding companies won't take it down because they would need to store it at their expense. They prefer to leave it in place until it's needed by another job.

My first summer in my flat involved five months of scaffolding for two weeks of decoration, meaning we couldn't safely leave open our windows in a hot summer. The poor quality of the work and the inaccuracy of the billing by Islington's PFI company is a story for another day! You have my sympathies OP!

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