Victory for tenant and her garden complaint

Caroline Williamson in her garden.
Caroline Williamson in her garden.

Housing chiefs have apologised to a disabled tenant who was forced to pay hundreds of pounds to sort out the garden mess they left.

Caroline Williamson, who suffers from severe arthritis, moved into her council house in Kirkintilloch’s Burns Drive, at the end of February.

But the garden of the property had been left in a dreadful state by the previous tenants.

Caroline told the Herald: “They should have cleared it before I got there - it was disgraceful.

“The grass, plants and trees were all overgrown and the greenhouse was in a real state.”

After several months Caroline took matters into her own hands and paid a gardener £250 to clear the back garden, only to be told by the council that they would only come and collect the waste if she paid them to.

However, after the Herald contacted East Dunbartonshire Council housing officers had a change of heart.

Grace Irvine, the council’s director of neighbourhood services, said: “I can confirm that the council’s housing team has arranged to remove the garden waste - and also to dismantle and remove an old garden hut and greenhouse belonging to the previous occupant - at no cost to the tenant on this occasion.

“The Housing Service use their discretion and do cut the grass at empty properties when required before a new tenant moves in, but on this occasion there was no arrangement in place to cut the grass which should have occurred given its condition.

“We are sorry if the tenant has experienced any inconvenience.”