Wrexham County Borough Council
Ms A complained about how Wrexham County Borough Council responded when she reported a fault with an electric fire in her house, and how the Council had responded to her concerns. Ms A said that the inspection of the fire was insufficient and that the Council unfairly concluded it was tenant damage. Ms A was concerned about the safety of the fire and that her family had to manage without the fire during the winter months.
The Ombudsman found that there had not been an independent physical inspection of the fire and therefore the Council’s conclusion was unjust. There was a lack of records and timely communication with Ms A, and no evidence that the Council had considered the impact caused by not having the fire in use.
The Ombudsman sought and gained the Council’s agreement to either replace the fire at no cost to Ms A or, arrange an independent physical inspection of the fire with a report. Should the report identify tenant damage, offer Ms A financial assistance with the cost incurred, and if a fault is identified, replace the fire at no cost to Ms A. In addition to these actions, the Council agreed to offer Ms A an apology for lack of timely and appropriate communication, and lack of consideration of the impact of not having use of the fire.