Council bosses are to spend up to £10,000 scripting, filming and editing a video instructing tenants how to prevent damp damaging their health and possessions.

To send a link to this page to a friend, you must be logged in.

Norwich City Council says it costs a “fairly significant” sum of cash each year to deal with damp in its near-16,900 properties.

But the authority has been criticised for choosing to spend money on making a film telling people how they can control condensation and mould.

A lack of maintenance to the houses rather than how tenants behave has been cited as a reason for damp and condensation problems.

A city council spokeswoman said: “Everyday activities, such as cooking and showering, add to the moisture in the air within a home and, if allowed to build up, can cause damp and eventually mould growth.

“It’s because of how easy it is for condensation to build up that damp is a persistent problem in many homes.

“There are straightforward steps tenants can take to control condensation and our aim with the instructional film is to show people very simply how they can do this, which would significantly reduce the problem within our properties.”

The council advertised for bidders to produce the film, with the contract listed under the heading “advertising, propaganda and information film and video-tape production”.

The contract is valued at between £7,500 and £10,000 and it is estimated to be for a three-month period.

Kevin Hayes, Norwich Leaseholders’ Association chairman, said he had been invited to discuss the content of the video.

He said: “The council should not be spending money this way in hard times and given their past record, the contract will probably have more holes in it than a Swiss cheese.

“However, damp is an issue for both leaseholders and tenants and I have had a couple of complaints about it quite recently, which I passed on to them.

“From what I have seen the biggest cause is lack of maintenance to gutters, ivy not controlled and suchlike, more than ‘lifestyle’ issues.”

Tenants have previously reported problems to the Evening News and taken to social networking sites to complain about the council’s response to treating damp.

But the council says it provides a five-page leaflet in an attempt to inform tenants how they can avoid mould growing in their properties if they have condensation problems.

If there is no improvement after six weeks, the authority says a damp inspection will take place to check ventilation and examine how the property is heated.

The council was unable to confirm an exact figure of how much it spends on dealing with damp, due to the relevant staff being out of the office during the Christmas period.

22 comments

  • to reach the masses with the rising damp episode, are they going viral on YouTube??? guess I can abuse the nuLabour propaganda via the uncensored comments of the tube!!!

    Report this comment

    nrg

    Monday, December 31, 2012

  • Surely this money would be better spent on addressing the inherent damp problems of old council houses and flats such as the one I live in which sometimes is wetter than an otters pocket £10,000 would do a hell of of lot more spent on the buildings not some stupid video, these people must be demented.

    Report this comment

    clive hill

    Monday, December 31, 2012

  • The council would be negligent in its duties as a landlord if it did not properly inform tenants of preventative measures which can be taken and which will save the council future costs.It does not release the council from its' wider duty to tackle structural failures of construction which are the underlying cause.

    Report this comment

    Peter Watson

    Monday, December 31, 2012

  • My mother owned a Norwich ex council house which when surveyed had extensive wall damp. I fear what we are hearing here is that nearly all NCC housing stock has damp problems.It cost my mother over £3.000 pound to have treatment and re plastering.16,900 properties significant amount putting it mildly

    Report this comment

    PaulH

    Monday, December 31, 2012

  • nrg....simples!!!!nulabour???bods!!!!Doh??????anyoldrubbish!!!!!

    Report this comment

    LARSON.E. WHIPSNADE

    Monday, December 31, 2012

  • Those who are old enough will remember the scandal of damp in the tower blocks built in Newcastle and Manchester it the Sixties. I do agree that opening a window helps but where walls are thin and poorly insulated householders cannot help but encounter some condensation. Old cottages were damp from the ground and floor up, but modern council houses are damp because of condensation. Fifties and sixties houses often have terrible plaster-once the mould gets in, it is impossible to remove. It is no more trouble to renovate an old house than it is some late Forties early Fifties properties they were so gerry built. In my opinion some of the older housing stock with big gardens should have been demolished and the sites used for better insulated homes with efficient heating built at higher density.

    Report this comment

    Daisy Roots

    Monday, December 31, 2012

  • A poorly written and biased piece of writing. The comment 'A lack of maintenance to the houses rather than how tenants behave has been cited as a reason for damp and condensation problems' demonstrates a lack of understanding into the matter and the usual council battering that this paper produces without knowing the facts. Damp and condensation is more a delicate balance of insulation, heating and ventilation. This takes a bit of knowledge to deal with. Education and self prevention is surely better than wasting huge amounts on surveying and diagnosing problems which have varying causes, many of which must be the way people use their own homes. £10,000 is a drop in the ocean on a stock of 16,900.

    Report this comment

    ahopefulsound

    Tuesday, January 1, 2013

  • There is a difference between damp caused by condensation and damp caused by other problems. I lived in really old houses as a kid and know that when bricks are old and porous, when there is not a proper damp course and when there is not a proper cavity wall a house can be damp from external sources. If the council house gutterings, downpipes and roofs are not maintained properly there will be damp from water pouring down walls, if they are homes with wood floors and air bricks and the ventilation is messed up, or the ground has been allowed to build up above the line of the damp course, or they are rendered and water is getting between render and brick or if the bricks are porous and the cavity walls are breached by bad construction then there will be damp which is not caused by internal condensation. Credit some of the tenants with some sense, even if some need telling that condensation can make a house damp inside. A lot of Norwich's council housing stock is old and I would wager that those homes which do have central heating have not had it for long. If a tenant moves into a home that has had mildew or mould in the plaster it will always keep coming back, no matter how well heated and ventilated. Only new plaster will stop it. £10K would not go far sorting out problems-if rents had been means tested for the last twenty years the council might have been able to afford proper maintenance. As for Queens Hills NRG- that's the problem with allowing developers to escape building control supervision by being part of their own housebuilders association - gerry building and gambling that not too much goes wrong before the ten years is up.I have been inside flats in new developments elsewhere in the region where the plaster board has been almost as thin as a cereal box and curling away from window frames.And there is a development near GY where the homeowners are going to be lucky if they do not have major cracks from subsidence problems because the developers levelled the ground from a borrow pit and built on a marsh - the gardens are already sinking and wrecking drains etc Developers seem to have no integrity.

    Report this comment

    Daisy Roots

    Thursday, January 3, 2013

  • When I had condensation problems in my flat, one of the technical team advisers said a cat flap should be installed, even though I didn't own a cat. Say it all really, maybe they need to install a giant cat flap up their own rectums !!!

    Report this comment

    chebram71

    Monday, December 31, 2012

  • ...effective DEHUMIDIFIERS work and are £75 upwards do tenants know that you don't need to heat spaces to keep them dry? It really sums up public sector waste that it seems to occur to no one at NCC that a film can be put together on the NCC site or youtube with a borrowed camera or phone - a lack of creative thinking 10K outrageous in these times thanks to EEN for bringing it to wider attention.

    Report this comment

    SB

    Monday, December 31, 2012

  • DB, I let you know I hang out both ways...this is 10 grand thrown out the window,the hard pressed taxpayer deserves better managership of their cash.nuLabour giving our coinage to their PR mates is just another kick in the nutz for us all....simples,even for old timers like yourself.

    Report this comment

    nrg

    Monday, December 31, 2012

  • Larson dear madame, heshe's like your troubled self, are soooooooooo nuLabour..vote ukippers, the real man's thinking party!!!!

    Report this comment

    nrg

    Monday, December 31, 2012

  • Daisywoot,the failed queens hills estate suffers from damp,it also has that 'modern' insulation and heating you're carping on about. Bods don't open windows when cooking or after baths etc...not forgetting the humble tumble dryer, which IMPO is one of the main causes of unwanted condensation.

    Report this comment

    nrg

    Monday, December 31, 2012

  • ahopefulof****, that old favorite 'follow the money' is a great scam buster of mine,along with the council numptyness of having been LinkedIn.

    Report this comment

    nrg

    Saturday, January 5, 2013

  • Rising Damp is simply, water from the ground that enters a structure by capillary action. Water that enters or affects a building through any other route can move about in various ways but is not rising damp. Only rising damp can be cured by the installation of a chemical damp proof course. Rising damp is a commonly encountered problem in some types of building, however it is often misdiagnosed. It is important that the investigations into dampness are undertaken by a trained and competent surveyor who can recognise and understand the problem. Decayed skirting boards, crumbling or salt stained plaster, discolouration and staining, decayed timber floors, peeling paint and wallpaper are all common when walls are affected by rising damp. These defects are not always evident but when they are, a specialist inspection is always recommended. Most types of masonry used in the walls of buildings will allow some water movement by capillary action; however, this is usually controlled by a physical barrier or damp proof course. If this physical barrier is absent, has broken down or is damaged then it is often possible to install a remedial damp proof course (DPC) to control water rising from the ground. Water rising from the ground often introduces contaminating salts into the walls and plaster coats. This contamination will often result in a need for the plaster to be removed and replaced using specially formulated salt resistant plasters. Hope that this helps! Regards, Whiley.

    Report this comment

    Whiley Boy

    Thursday, January 3, 2013

  • nrg.....unfortunately your assumption that 'most' people know how to deal with human made condensation is incorrect. Having worked in both private and public sector housing condensation is a problem in both areas and not confined to old properties only. Not sure why you have such a cynical viewpoint but to assume this is a 'scam' smacks more of some anti council prejudice rather than having any factual base. Maybe get some facts rather than bounding about such comments in future.

    Report this comment

    ahopefulsound

    Friday, January 4, 2013

  • ahopefulof****, I can't help that many council tenants nowadays suffer from the numpty syndrome. Condensation for dummies...Open windows when cooking,maintain an even temperature of around 20c during the winter months,vent tumble dryers to the outside,unblock air-vents on outside walls, run the cold water tap when draining hot veggies, fill bath with about 50mm of cold water before running the hot tap, fit double or triple glazing, fitted with night vents, sleep with small window ajar in bedrooms,air all rooms during the daytime, revert back to using solid fuel or wood burners....failing this, many tenants could stop breathing,thus saving the hard pressed taxpayer a big fat wedge in cash and reducing the need for PR cronies and nuLabour propaganda

    Report this comment

    nrg

    Saturday, January 5, 2013

  • £10,000 ???wtf???..they got some Hollywood b.movie actor blurbing the 'propaganda'

    Report this comment

    nrg

    Monday, December 31, 2012

  • peter w, D'oh!!! and how are it's tenants going to watch the propaganda vid??? informing folk can be done when tenants take up the renting agreement. The 10k waste is another scam by the failed nuLabour honchos.

    Report this comment

    nrg

    Monday, December 31, 2012

  • ahopefulof****,most bods have enough commonsense and life experience to deal with man made condensation...opening windows is the simplest and cheapest option. The 10k spent on PR mates of the council is a scam.

    Report this comment

    nrg

    Wednesday, January 2, 2013

  • Just call it Open Windows, there £10,000 saved :)

    Report this comment

    chebram71

    Monday, December 31, 2012

  • the right cannot lecture the left on wasting money they spent nearly £100 m on AV referendum and £100 m on police crime commissioners.

    Report this comment

    Double Bill

    Monday, December 31, 2012

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Norfolk Weather

Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 12°C

min temp: 11°C

Five-day forecast

loading...

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT