Left without water over Easter break

AN Ely couple spent a miserable Easter without hot water or central heating. Paul and Tina Roper of Windmill Close had to wash from water boiled in the kettle after their boiler failed more than a week ago. They blame their housing association s contr

AN Ely couple spent a "miserable" Easter without hot water or central heating.

Paul and Tina Roper of Windmill Close had to wash from water boiled in the kettle after their boiler failed more than a week ago.

They blame their housing association's contractor, RG Francis, for their ordeal, which they feared could have resulted in Mrs Roper's asthma flaring up.

Mr Roper also suffers from back problems, which have been exacerbated by long periods standing at the basin.


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"Cambridge Housing have been very good about it and have given us electric heaters, but the contractors they use have been awful," Mr Roper said.

The couple, who are both unemployed, have had to rely on putting money into a pre-paid electrical meter to make sure there is hot water through the kettle.

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Mr Roper said the worst part of the experience was Easter Sunday, when the couple had family over for dinner.

"When we've had meals we've had to boil the kettle to do the washing up - my brother was on leave from the army and it was miserable," he said.

The couple had been waiting for the delivery of a part for the boiler, which was eventually installed on Tuesday.

Cambridge Housing said they were very sorry about the couple's experience.

A spokesman said the association has experienced "teething problems" with the new contractor, which he said has generally been working well.

"RG Francis has apologised for letting Cambridge Housing Society down and have promised us they will apologise to Mr and Mrs Roper too, also providing them with some compensation as a token of their good will," he said.

He added that RG Francis has since made changes to the way it purchases parts as a result of the Ropers' situation and that he expects delays to be avoided in future.

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