Tenant's despair as council fixes his windows by screwing them shut
- Credit: Danielle Booden
A tower block tenant has slammed the council for its "ingenious" solution to his broken window problem - screwing them shut.
Nathan Wyer, 28 from Norwich, broke both ankles in a motorbike collision in January and was off work for five months.
With sick pay covering only a fraction of his rent he became homeless.
After weeks of sofa surfing, Norwich City Council offered him an eighth floor flat in Lefroy Road back in September.
But upon arrival he saw the windows in his kids' bedroom were screwed shut.
And for a few weeks, his kitchen window suffered the same fate.
He explained: "When I moved in to the flat the bedroom window was screwed shut and the kitchen window was on the wonk. A contractor came to fix the kitchen one, but in the process broke the opening mechanism.
"They said it was a lost cause and locked it shut, but there was no extractor fan. When I was cooking there was loads of condensation, and the fire alarm kept going off. I couldn't bear it.
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"I managed to get it open again the other day by taking the handle off and adding an external lock. It's not secure, but I've got no other choice."
Mr Wyer said his biggest fear was what would happen if there was a fire or if the screws came loose while his children were staying over.
But when he relayed these to the contractor, he was told there were no parts available to repair the windows, and that screwing them shut was the only option save for complete replacement.
An email to Mr Wyer from the contractor said: "NCC is waiting for the result from a structural survey before making a decision on the windows.
"We have a stay put policy for fires within the tower block, so the fire brigade would be smashing the windows to gain access."
A horrified Mr Wyer said: "It's absolutely disgusting. After what happened at Grenfell you think councils would be taking building regulations seriously.
"And I bet the tenant would be the first to blame if there was ever mould or damp because the windows were permanently closed."
The council did not provide a comment.