Connaught workers taken on by new company

More than 30 of the Connaught workers from Norwich who lost their jobs when the company went into administration have been taken on by one of the companies which stepped in to provide emergency housing repairs in the city.

Just over 300 workers were made redundant last month when city council contractor Connaught Partnerships went into administration - and hopes of a rescue package which would have seen them taken on by another company were dashed because City Hall feared a legal challenge if they did not put the contract out to tender.

But Lovell, based in Thorpe Road, which was awarded an emergency contract to make sure emergency repairs are carried out to some 17,000 city council tenants, said it had taken on 32 ex-Connaught workers to carry out that work.

The company, which is part of UK construction and regeneration group Morgan Sindall, says it is also finishing work to kitchens and bathrooms previously started by Connaught and started the surveys and building work last week.

The company is also carrying out work to empty city council properties to ready them for new tenants.

Lovell regional director Simon Medlar, said: 'We are pleased to be helping to ensure that residents continue to receive essential repairs and planned improvements to their homes using the company's maintenance expertise.'

The council is now re-letting interim contracts for nine to 12 months, which it hopes to have up and running by November, before re-letting the permanent contracts - a process which could take a year.