Stake claim for lighting refund, Norwich 2,600 leaseholders urged

City Hall in Norwich. Photo: Nick Butcher.

City Hall in Norwich. Photo: Nick Butcher. - Credit: EDP pics © 2007

Leaseholders in Norwich have been urged to claim back the 'tens of thousands' of pounds a campaign group says they are owed because City Hall overcharged for communal lighting.

The annual general meeting of the Norwich Leaseholders Association (NLA) was told that a tribunal finding that the council had overcharged for community lighting had been upheld, after the council failed in an appeal.

A report, which went before the meeting, stated that the council was not contacting the city's 26,000 leaseholders - people who have bought flats or maisonettes from the council - to tell them they were entitled to refunds.

And David Feltham, chairman of the NLA, urged the people who attended Wednesday night's meeting to claim back for what they might be entitled to.

He said: 'The sad thing is not many leaseholders have taken up the challenge and asked the city council to give them a refund.

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'The city council are aware they are holding tens of thousands of pounds of leaseholders' money that has been wrongfully paid to the council.

'Our plea is if you haven't had a refund and think you should then write to the council and ask them to do a calculation.'

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Mr Feltham said he had been warned that not all leaseholders would be due a refund.

He said: 'But what we do believe is most people will get a refund. Our appeal to you all now, is to seek any reimbursement which may be due.'

The council was asked why it was not writing to leaseholders about the issue and a spokesman insisted the tribunal had not set a legal precedent.

A spokesman said: 'All leaseholders have benefited from communal lighting outside their properties for a number of years - a service which the council has paid for and makes no profit from.

'There are a handful of cases where small refunds have been issued as a gesture of goodwill but no legal precedent has been set.'

So far, 59 leaseholders have been refunded to the tune of almost £4,700. The biggest refund was £196.25, with an average of £78.63.

• What do you think? Write, giving full contact details, to Letters Editor, Prospect House, Rouen Road, Norwich NR1 1RE or email

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