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Family-of-seven's front door nightmare means they can't leave home secure for nine weeks

PUBLISHED: 06:30 28 September 2019 | UPDATED: 09:26 29 September 2019

The door at Gresham Road where damage means tenant Michael Falkner has not been able to use it properly for weeks. Photo: Archant

The door at Gresham Road where damage means tenant Michael Falkner has not been able to use it properly for weeks. Photo: Archant

Archant

A dad described today how he has to climb through a window to get into his council house each night because of weeks of problems with his front door.

The damage around the door on Gresham Road, Mile Cross. Photo: ArchantThe damage around the door on Gresham Road, Mile Cross. Photo: Archant

Michael Faulkner, 36, said he reported to Norwich City Council in July that the door of his home on Gresham Road, Mile Cross, would not shut.

Brickwork around the door is badly cracked and the frame no longer fits the door.

It means that he, his wife and five children have been unable to leave the house together as they can not lock it, but workmen have been unable to repair it so far.

To close the door each night Mr Faulkner said he has to push the frame in from the outside, while his wife, Kelly, stands inside the house and uses a screwdriver to close it.

There is scaffolding around the house to repair the roof which has stopped workmen getting access to the door on Gresham Road, Mile Cross. Photo: ArchantThere is scaffolding around the house to repair the roof which has stopped workmen getting access to the door on Gresham Road, Mile Cross. Photo: Archant

He then has to clamber through the front window to get back inside the house.

"It's embarrassing," the father-of-five said. "I wait until late at night to clamber through the window (so the neighbours don't see)."

Worried about security, he said he sleeps downstairs and either he or his wife always has to be in the house during the day.

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On Friday council contractors visited his home and permanently closed the door until it can be fixed.

It means the family have to use the back door to get in and out.

A spokesperson for Norwich City Council said: "Our contractor, Norwich Norse Building, went to Mr Faulkner's home on the day he reported this repair to make the door secure.

"Since then, they have been in regular contact with him to look into the structural problems so they can be resolved.

The damage around the door on Gresham Road, Mile Cross. Photo: ArchantThe damage around the door on Gresham Road, Mile Cross. Photo: Archant

"Norwich Norse Building has let us know they have visited the property again today and expect the work to be completed soon."

But Mr Faulkner said: "I'm fuming. It should be an urgent job. It feels like nobody will take responsibility. Winter is coming and the there are gaps in the door.

"We've had four or five guys come out and look at it."

Contractors told Mr Faulkner that they could not fix the brick work and door because the house is surrounded by scaffolding for roof repairs.

The damage around the door on Gresham Road, Mile Cross. Photo: ArchantThe damage around the door on Gresham Road, Mile Cross. Photo: Archant

Mr Faulkner believes the house is suffering from subsidence as cracks have also appeared in other parts of the brickwork at the front of the house.

"We are living in a house that is literally falling down," he added.

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