Pensioner can FINALLY head outside after 'obstacle course' garden fixed

Madeleine Carter was at last able to head outside after the council replaced the benches and tarmac at Whitebeam Court

Madeleine Carter was at last able to head outside, with help from her family, after the council replaced the benches and tarmac at Whitebeam Court - Credit: Linda Carter

An 84-year-old who didn't leave her Norwich home for months because the grounds resembled an "obstacle course" is thrilled after the place was finally tidied up.

Madeleine Carter, who lives in Motum Road's Whitebeam Court retirement complex, said she was absolutely thrilled work to trim trees and replace worn benches and uneven paving slabs was at last completed.

A Norwich City Council spokeswoman said the improvement job sat outside routine maintenance so needed to be costed and arranged separately after Ms Carter first got in touch — hence the delay.

She added: "We thank people for their patience, and hope the changes improve the look and feel of the area surrounding their home.

"This is part of an ambitious and ongoing wider programme to improve the aesthetics of our estates."

Madeleine Carter was able to get outside again once the council completed the improvements planned at Whitebeam Court

Madeleine Carter was able to get outside again once the council completed the improvements planned at Whitebeam Court - Credit: Linda Carter

Mrs Carter explained: "Before it was like an obstacle course in the communal garden.

"But it's perfect what the council has done out there. I feel much safer about going outside now.

"I'm still a bit unsteady as I've had a few falls recently, but I'm getting there.

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"I was able to make it outside with my walkers.

"Without a doubt, the entire place looks so much better than it did."

Madeleine Carter and her son Paul said issues at Whitebeam Court had been going on for months

Mrs Carter had previously declared the garden an inaccessible "obstacle course" because of a lack of council maintenance - Credit: Paul Carter

Madeleine Carter and her son Paul said issues at Whitebeam Court had been going on for months

Mrs Carter had previously declared the garden an inaccessible "obstacle course" because of a lack of council maintenance - Credit: Paul Carter

Madeleine's son Paul said it was a relief the work was finished — even if it did take ages.

For months his mum was trapped inside her house, fearful wayward tree branches, piles of rubbish, uneven flooring or broken benches would result in an injury of some kind.

Mr Carter said: "There's still a few small issues and tripping hazards, though the council claims there isn't.

"But on the whole, it looks a hell of a lot better.

"It's just a shame it took so long for any work to start.

"The first time we contacted the council was April 19, and the works didn't begin until November.

Paul Carter and Madeleine Carter

Mrs Carter had previously declared the garden an inaccessible "obstacle course" because of a lack of council maintenance - Credit: Paul Carter

"For a while I just felt like we were being ignored. I'm not sure we would have even had a response if we hadn't got the Evening News involved.

"Every time we called someone for answers we just got nowhere."

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