Action needed on children in Tower Block.

Returning home with her two young children early one evening from her mum’s the young tenant of a flat in Mellish Court, West Bletchley was faced with both lifts not working and having to reach the 15th floor with the children, a buggy and shopping.

 

Her partner was working the night shift and so she was left by herself to get to the top of the flats via the narrow back stairs.

 

The young mother of two children aged two and 9 months called into Cllr Nigel Long’s advice surgery. He was deeply concerned that she was in the flats on the 15th floor.

 

It reminded Cllr Long of the terrible death of a young mother and baby who jumped from an upper floor of the flats in the mid 1980s. As a result the Council agreed not to place children above a certain floor level.

 

Cllr Long was concerned that, “the council places no priority on meeting the needs of children. I was deeply shocked to find out that in 2007 the Council had changed its approach to children and basically said it did not matter where they lived; they would get no extra priority.”

 

The Council’s policy, according to officers (e-mail dated 2.12.11) is:

  

  • The new Allocations Policy was introduced in October 2007 and this specifically highlights the fact that children in flats is not considered to be a housing need so does not give additional priority.

 

Cllr Long has raised the problem of children in the flats with the Council and will be meeting senior officers to try and address the problem.

 

Cllr Long concluded, “I do not think young families should be placed in Mellish Court, but if they are they should not be housed above the third floor. I will be pushing for action on this matter.”