Dear TRA chairs
This has been a challenging few months for our community. As you will know one of the decisions the council had to take early on was to suspend all non-urgent repairs in response to the COVID-19 lockdown.
This suspension is still in place, but we are now planning how to resume this work, and to catch up on repairs we have not been able to do, as soon as restrictions have been sufficiently eased and it is safe to do so. While most council staff have been able to continue to their work from home, repairs operatives work out of Frensham Street depot. Like all our buildings, we need to ensure that the depot is safe for increasing numbers of staff to access welfare facilities and stores etc whilst exercising social distancing and good hygiene.
If there is an emergency repair issue residents should phone the contact centre as normal by calling 0800 952 4444 or 020 7525 2600, this services continues to be open 24 hours a day seven days a week. Any issues can be escalated to managers both in and out of hours
Whilst we work hard to make sure all repairs are completed first time, it is not always possible. Residents should be encouraged initially to escalate any issues themselves, either online using their MySouthwark account, or by calling the contact centre.
We still have the TRA priority line in place at the call centre, which you can access as TRA representatives by calling 020 7525 0596 during office hours.
Lastly, I would like to refer you to the following Roadmap for consideration and feedback that has been prepared by repairs team as an indication of the journey needed to return us to a service that resembles the pre COVID-19 position.
We are also looking at having meetings where we can discuss further our reopening and any further questions you have. We will communicate these out separately.
Week one – 6 July 2020
- We will be starting roofing works we currently have in the system alongside communal works that are external to our blocks and buildings in the south of the borough. This will include repairs such as drainage, bollard and paving repairs and communal doors.
- We will be restarting urgent orders with our disrepair team.
- We will undertake a communal inspection of the external parts of all of our estates in the south of the borough and raise any repairs needed. We are phasing these inspections for half of the borough to ensure that our contractors can undertake the works needed as quickly as possible and we can continue to track these repairs with you as we have done previously
- We will inspect all playgrounds on estates to ensure that they are safe to use when we reopen them
Week two – 13 July 2020
- We will be restarting our leaks from above follow on works where residents are still experiencing a leak, for example resealing bathrooms, retiling or fitting shower curtains
- We will be restarting communal works that are external to our blocks and buildings in the north of the borough.
- We will restart works within residents homes that we already have logged in the system. Residents will receive a call to book an appointment with them. We anticipate that it will take a number of weeks to work through these repairs.
Week three – 20 July 2020
- We will restart communal repair works already logged for within our blocks and buildings in the south of the borough that have been reported directly and as part of our estate inspections
- We will undertake a communal inspection of the external parts of all of our estates in the north of the borough
- We will review works we have logged to windows and doors within residents homes to see if a phased start can be safely initiated
- We will restart our adaptations works to council and private properties
- We will restart all follow on repairs following a leak from above, including plastering and painting
Week four – 27 July 2020
- For this date we will restart further works which aren’t urgent as part of disrepair claims
- We will restart communal repair works already logged for within our blocks and buildings in the north of the borough
- We have worked with colleagues in customer experience to put in place a new online reporting system for repairs which makes the process easier for both the resident and the council. From this week we will be trialling a soft launch of the online reporting system without widespread publicity. We will send the link to this out to you during this week for your help in trialling this system with us
Week five – 3 August 2020
- We will start taking routine repairs again from this week
- We will undertake communal inspections to blocks and buildings across the borough and repairs will be raised as required
We need to ensure that the service isn’t overwhelmed and that we can undertake those repairs we already know about first and continue to respond to emergencies when residents need us which is why we won’t hesitate to pull back or change the plan as we move through the weeks.
Director of Asset Management
Housing and Modernisation
Housing and Modernisation160 Tooley Street
2nd Floor, Hub 5
London SE1 2QH
PO Box 64529
2nd Floor, Hub 5
London SE1P 5LX