Thursday, 2 September 2010

Tea and strawberry cake at Kirkstone Lodge

I was very honoured last week to have been invited by the residents of Kirkstone Lodge, a sheltered housing unit on Isleworth's Ivybridge estate, to a tea party organised by the occupants of the unit and supported by Hounslow Homes and the staff at the unit.

When I was Lead Member for Housing I was forever concerned about the future of dwellings such as this one. The threat of reductions in funding always loomed, and there was a constant feeling that the units were being "phased out". Many feel that the communal WCs and other throwbacks to a bygone age render the dwellings obsolete, and unattractive to potential tenants.

The mistake that is often made though is to confuse sheltered housing with care housing and to consider the occupants to be housebound and in need of permanent care. One resident of Kirkstone Lodge laughed as she related to me how somebody had asked her "Do they let you out at night?"

The tenants at Kirkstone Lodge are assertive, intelligent and well-organised. A couple of years ago I guided several of them as they won a Stage Three complaint against Hounslow Homes which was heard before a Members' Panel. The complainants felt they had not been taken seriously enough when they had objected to certain aspects of the regime under which they were living, and following an articulate presentation by one of their number the Panel agreed.

I enjoyed my afternoon with these residents thoroughly, and the tea and strawberry cake which they insisted I drank and ate in some quantity.

Another strong community in the tradition that Isleworth has developed over recent years.


Anonymous said...

Well done Phil, you've just managed to gatecrash the latest edition of "Hounslow Homes News" (issue 64), courtesy of this visit to Kirkstone Lodge.
A similar photo, but with YOU clearly in the picture, appears near the back of the 'mag.

Your presence is of course uncredited and I wonder if they thought of airbrushing you out or even superimposing Sue Sampson's head on your body ?

Will you be gatecrashing the Hounslow Homes AGM on 20th October ?

Phil Andrews said...

Phew! For a moment I thought you were suggesting they superimposed her body onto my head.

Robin/Tit ? said...

Most peculiar Philip !
I understand Hounslow Homes arranged this bash, yet we can't seem to see any of THEIR personnel in either published photograph.
Camera-shy or another explanation ?

Come on Phil, our imaginations are running riot !

Phil Andrews said...

The event was organised by the residents, not Hounslow Homes, but HH did attend and I can assure you at least one of them was in the garden when the photo was taken but if I say any more than that I shall get her into trouble.

Anonymous said...

Curiouser & curiouser !

Hounslow Homes were clearly claiming most of the credit for the event in their 'mag, hence my surprise at your presence in the publicity shot.

Anonymous said...

Such a shame you decided to give Hopeless Homes AGM a miss.

I bet you're not going to miss that Mogden meeting on the 3rd, are you ?

Phil Andrews said...

I certainly won't, Vanessa.

Anonymous said...

Since when have Hounslow Homes been running their G.E.M Awards ?
Tenants are currently being invited to vote for their favourite HH employee, if you please !
Whatever next - a vote for our favourite Italian war hero ?