Monday, June 12, 2006


Broken lifts are making our lives a misery

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MUM Natasha McKay struggled up 20 flights. Pictures: Mark Gibson

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GRAHAM McGUNNAGLE is worried about his gran trapped in the 22-storey block

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ONE of the tower blocks in Cedar Street on the St George's Estate

TENANTS in three city tower blocks are demanding urgent action to stop their ageing lifts breaking down.

People living in the 22-storey flats in Maryhill say they are trapped in their homes every time the 20-year-old lifts pack in.

They claim one lift was out of action for four-and-a-half months.

Now, after another breakdown last week, they are calling for landlord Glasgow Housing Association to replace the faulty lifts in Cedar Street, part of St George's Estate.

Last Wednesday the lift at

No 65 broke down for a day, and many pensioners, disabled tenants and mums with prams were unable to make the lengthy journey down the fire escape stairs.

Volunteer Graham McGunnagle, 20, lives on the fifth floor and can use the stairs when the lift is broken. But his 66-year-old gran on the 17th floor has to stay at home.

Graham, who is a member of Cedar Tenants' Association, said: "My gran can't do stairs so it would have been too much for her to walk down 17 flights.

"She was stuck at home all day. We've complained numerous times but are given no explanations as to why it's happening."

Disabled nursing home volunteer Mark Rooney, 37, who stays on the 20th floor of No 104 says he is at the end of his tether.

Mark, who is registered blind, said: "Going up and down stairs is an absolute nightmare for me. This happens regularly.

"The lifts should have been replaced years ago. I'm angry, disappointed and downhearted."

Mum Natasha McKay, 22, struggled up and down 20 flights with her son Daniel Nixon, 2.

Natasha said: "When I took Daniel to nursery I had to bump him all the way down 20 flights in the buggy. I had to struggle back up with the buggy while carrying him. It's terrible."

In a previous breakdown, lifts in No 65 were out of action for four-and-a-half months and on at least four occasions since, lifts have jammed at No 104. The third tower block, No 9, has also been affected.

A GHA spokeswoman said the breakdown last week was due to a burst water pipe which damaged the lift's electrical supply.

Last year's repairs were held up because the GHA was waiting for a part to be delivered.

The spokeswoman added: "We do understand the tenants' frustrations and can assure them our staff dealt with the isolated lift breakdowns as quickly as physically possible.

"GHA is spending £1million every two days on improving tenants' homes across the city."

Last week, GHA announced the city's 80,000 tenants are to be given more control over housing decision-making and will be able to choose how much cash is allocated to specific projects.

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