VEHICLE owners are fuming after being given just one week to vacate a block of garages despite reassurances they would be keeping them.
Residents at Redwood Estate in Cranford were shocked when they received a letter just after the Easter break from Hounslow Homes, who manage the properties, telling them they had to move their cars, motorbikes and possessions out of their garages by today (Friday).
The whole area is being regenerated but residents say they were assured at two planning consultation meetings that 30 out of the 91 garages would be kept for those who use them.
Gary Smith, 59, has two garages for which he pays £15 a week per garage.
He said: “Hounslow Homes has been high handed and given us only a week’s notice to move our stuff, they posted the letters the day before Good Friday so they obviously didn’t reach us until after Easter, I was incensed when I received it.
“I’m disabled so I need my car and I don’t want it getting vandalised because it’s not in a garage. I also have a collection of seven vintage motorbikes so where am I going to store all of those now?”
Zena Sanderson, 80, also lives at the estate and is worried about her son’s taxi not being kept in a garage.
She said: “I’ve had my garage for 40 years and my son is a black cab driver so it’s really important his cab is kept in a garage. The cars on this estate have been broken into and graffitied quite a bit and he can’t afford to lose his livelihood that way.”
A spokesperson from Hounslow Homes apologised for retracting the original plan to offer garages to residents and explained there are a number of reasons for the move away from its original intentions, including requests for increased parking spaces, the poor condition of the existing garages and the lack of availability of replacement parts for the existing garages.
The spokesperson said: “All these factors contributed to the proposal to provide open parking rather than garages.
“However, we have listened to comments and understand how much resident’s value having the use of the garage facilities and their wish for this to continue.
“As a result, we have worked with the developer to locate 30 new garages on the estate as soon as possible.”
Hounslow Homes confirmed they will need people to move their cars out of the garages shortly and are inviting residents to apply for new space elsewhere.