Couple’s certified nightmare

John Andrews (77) and his non-conforming ramp at Tydd St Giles Golf Complex.
John Andrews (77) and his non-conforming ramp at Tydd St Giles Golf Complex.

Fenland Council has been accused of issuing an essential certificate on a new build without an officer visiting the property to make sure it is up to standard.

John Andrews (77), who lives at Carnoustie Court, on the golf complex at Tydd St Giles, claims his and his wife’s dream retirement home has turned into a nightmare after a Certificate of Conformity - required to enable the property to be sold - was issued without proper checks being carried out.

Mr Andrews, who paid £230,000 for his luxury unit, said there are so many things wrong with the property the certificate should never have been issued.

Among the many issues is an access ramp, which Mr Andrews said is dangerous and falling to pieces.

“I have had a structural engineer out to look at the property and he has condemned the ramp and said there are many things wrong, which means the property should never have been passed to be given a Certificate of Conformity,” said Mr Andrews.

He claims the certificate was issued after a telephone conversation with the developer and that no council officer had been out to check that the property passed on all eight points required by the certificate.

The council told him the certificate was issued from photographs.

Other issues include the bannisters, which Mr Andrews also claims do not comply with the necessary standards and are dangerous.

“The certificate issued is really not worth the paper it is written on. All the things wrong should have been put right before the certificate was issued. As it is we are having to fight to get everything corrected, which is difficult because we have got the Certificate of Conformity. It is basically like someone issuing an MOT certificate for a car, without even seeing it,” added Mr Andrews.

A spokesman for Fenland Council said: “The Council is satisfied that the construction of Plot 2 complied with Building Regulations. Necessary site visits were undertaken at appropriate times and following submission of required information, a completion certificate was issued for the property.

“The Council is aware that Mr Andrews claims to have a structural survey of the building but at no time has that document been provided to Council officers to comment on. Too date all procedures in relation to assessing the property for Building Regulation Consent have been correctly followed. The matter appears to be a contractual issue between Mr Andrews and his developer.”