Result for residents of Conar’s Court as they return home

Eamonn McCann at the Conars Court complex with a group` of residents.
Eamonn McCann at the Conars Court complex with a group` of residents.
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Residents of Conar’s Court have returned home following the restoration of gas and heating to the 40 homes in the Derry apartment complex.

Some of those affected had been staying with residents and friends while their safety concerns were being addressed.

“The situation was particularly worrying as winter set in,” said Foyle MLA Eamonn McCann after meeting with residents at the weekend.

“It’s been an intense campaign. But the problems are now being dealt with. It’s a good result.”

The building’s gas supply had been cut off following complaints by residents and an inspection by the NI Health and Safety Executive in May.

About a dozen residents accompanied by Mr. McCann last month sat in at the city centre offices of landlords Habinteg Housing Association until a senior official travelled from Belfast to hear their concerns.

“Promises made at that time appear to have been delivered,” said the People Before Profit MLA.

“The residents have shown that the best way to get problems remedied is for people to come together and take a stand.

“In fairness, the difficulties at Conar’s Court were not of Habinteg’s making. But they were the landlords when the difficulties came to a crunch and had to take responsibility.

“There is a wider question that needs to be looked into about safety standards at the time when the construction industry was reeling from the banking crash,” he said.

Conar’s Court was completed in 2008, although most residents didn’t move in until 2014.

“For the moment, it’s enough to say - well done to Conar’s Court, they have shown others the way forward,” Mr. McCann concluded.