A disabled woman has spoken of the misery caused by almost weekly attacks on the place where she’s lived for nearly two decades.
Martina Haddock (50) has lived happily in a block of flats in Edward Street for the last 18 years but recently the building has attracted vandalism on a regular basis.
The flats are owned by the Housing Executive who Martina said do their best to fix the damage, but are being called out far too often in her opinion. Martina, who has been in a wheelchair all her life, said: “You’ll see them in the corridor, being rowdy, playing music, smoking and drinking carry outs.
“None of them live here. They’ll tell you they know someone in one of the flats, but if that’s the case, why are they hanging about in the corridor?
“They’ve no respect for any of the people who live in these flats. They think it’s fun to wreck the place.
“They broke the glass in the back door last week. They kicked in both the panels.
“Then this Friday someone put their boot through the back door. The glass in the front door was also broken. It looks like a bullet hole in the glass. That only happened on Saturday night.”
A spokesperson for the Housing Executive said: “The flats at Edward Street operate a door entry system giving residents control over who enters the communal areas and we have ordered a service of the system to ensure it is operating correctly. We would urge all residents to ensure that the system is being used properly.
“Communal areas in our flats are inspected on a regular basis. We can confirm that a routine inspection yesterday found that damage had been caused to communal doors at a block of flats in Edward Street and an order has been made to replace the glass and repair the damage. There is also minor damage to safety glass in an adjacent block and this glass will be replaced in due course. The last reported incident of damage at these flats was in May of this year.
“The Housing Executive has not received any complaints about anti-social behaviour relating to this block of flats and therefore we were unaware that there has been an ongoing issue of youths congregating in this communal hallway.
“We would urge any resident to report any incident of anti-social behaviour directly to their local Housing Executive office and to the PSNI.”