24th Oct, 2020

Redditch charity to help vulnerable blind woman following council blunder

Ross Crawford 13th Sep, 2019

A BIG-HEARTED Redditch charity has stepped in after a vulnerable blind woman was left by council contractors in a house packed with a jumble of furniture.

Redditch Association for the Blind (RAB) came to the rescue after hearing how 52-year-old Julie Few had been left by workers called in to remove dangerous floor tiles from her bedroom.

The Oakenshaw mum’s bungalow was on a borough council work schedule, but when contractors turned up last Tuesday, none of the bedroom furniture had been removed because Julie couldn’t find anyone to do it.

They returned on Thursday and, with the room now cleared, removed the tiles returning on Friday to skim the floor.

“I thought they were going to put new tiles down but they said they had no money,” said Julie.

“I certainly don’t have any and they just left me with an empty bedroom and furniture piled up everywhere.

“I’ve had to sleep on the sofa since.”

Appalled, she contacted first the Redditch Standard and then Redditch Association for the Blind.

It’s chairman Bill Payne said: “They just left Mrs Few with an empty bedroom and said we’re not paying for any flooring, and if the council hasn’t any money, fair enough.

“But Mrs Few has no money either, how is she going to pay for new tiles or a carpet?

“I am very disappointed with the council – why didn’t they alert social services that here was a vulnerable blind woman in need of help?”

RAB dug deep and rang Paradise Carpets of Lodge Park to get a new carpet for Mrs Few.

“The owner of Paradise Carpets, without even asking, knocked 10 per cent off the price for us, which was terrific of him,” said Bill.

“We’re a local charity, all our money comes from local people and it’s only right we spend it locally.”

A council spokesperson said: “We very rarely move people’s furniture or belongings as we are not insured to do so.

“Mrs Few’s family was on hand to move the furniture, eventually, so we could do the work and once it was complete they would move it back.

“We did not leave Mrs Few on her own and our remit of work, and the timescale, was made very clear to her and her family.”

Mrs Few said: “What the council did to me was both unreal and unfair.

“I am so grateful to both Redditch Association for the Blind and want to thank the manager of Paradise Carpets.”

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