Thistle Housing Association withholds payment to energy firm over incomplete job
Thistle Housing Association has refused to make a £3.4 million payment to E.ON over incomplete environmental upgrade work in Toryglen.
According to the Evening Times, the energy firm should have completed environmental upgrade work to 608 properties in the area within 12 weeks. E.ON was tasked with replacing roofs, windows and roughcasting and installing insulation in Toryglen flats and houses to make them more energy efficient.
However over a year later, the work, which started in June 2016, has either been mismanaged or not completed.
Residents say roughcasting applied to buildings is cracking, allowing water to infiltrate properties and cause damp. They also say there are problems with windowsills and new roofs, which they say are not in line with gutters, again causing water to lash on to the roughcast.
Thistle Housing Association, using £3.4m of Scottish Government money, was supposed to pay E.ON when works were completed. But the Association refused to do so when a quantity surveyor appointed by Thistle would not sign off the works.
In response, E.ON appointed an independent adjudicator - which has now found in favour of the housing association.
A spokeswoman for Thistle Housing Association said the organisation is “thrilled” with the result.
She told the Evening Times: “E.ON appointed an independent adjudicator to determine whether payment for the major works at Toryglen was due.
“Working on behalf of our residents, this is something we strongly contested given the ongoing schedule and snagging work still to be completed.
“We are thrilled that the outcome of this issue has ruled in our favour.”
The situation appeared to come to a head earlier this month when E.ON staff working on the troubled project left the site after an alleged altercation with residents, who had become exasperated with the situation where some have had up to 13 completion dates for their homes.
Police were called to the area when a row broke out between E.ON staff and residents with each side blaming the other for the disturbance.
In response, E.ON removed all of its staff from the site, causing further delays.
A spokesman for E.ON told the Daily Record: “We have had to take steps to withdraw colleagues while we ensure the site is safe enough for them to complete the works in the coming weeks.
“We took this decision after one of our site supervisors and an independent building inspector, who was reporting on the works at residents’ request, were verbally abused by a small group of residents while on a tour of the estate and prevented from leaving.
“The safety of our employees is paramount and it is completely unacceptable that our staff should be treated in this way.”
A spokesperson for Thistle Housing Association said: “E.ON temporarily removed its workmen from the energy efficiency works at Toryglen last Thursday but has now resumed work on site.
“Thistle Housing Association is continuing to liaise with all parties to allow the final phase of work and snagging to continue as we strive for a conclusion to these works, within a safe environment for all.”
Currently, neither E.ON nor Thistle can give a completion date for the scheme.
The Thistle spokeswoman added: “We have a capped-price contract with E.ON and will continue to work within the parameters of this agreement.
“Our Quantity Surveyor will be monitoring the works on an ongoing basis.
“We are striving to secure a satisfactory conclusion to what has been a very challenging contract for all parties.”
A spokesman for Glasgow City Council said the local authority will commission an independent audit into the situation.
He told the Evening Times: “The council has now prepared a draft scope review document for the Independent Project Review, which will be shared with other involved organisation for comment shortly.
“In the coming months, we will appoint an independent third-party organisation to carry out the Independent Project Review.”