There are 84 ground floor flats on the Hanger Hill Garden Estate almost one third of a total of 255 flats.
A large proportion of these ground floor flats suffer from quite severe damp problems including rising damp and severe condensation. The extra damp increases the likelihood of woodworm attack on the wooden floorboards of ground floor flats
In comparison first and second floor flats have far less damp problems and these problems can usually be solved rapidly by providing better air circulation and extra heating in areas of dampness.
If you have complained to the HHGE Management in the past namely the Chairman Ian Collier or the Property Manager Lloyd Paxton you will invariably have been told that it is your own fault for failing to deal with normal condensation resulting from human activities such as washing, cooking and drying clothes.
However neither Ian Collier nor Lloyd Paxton have ever been able to explain why ground floor flats suffer disproportionately from damp compared to first and second floor flats.
The purpose of this article is to explain the most likely cause of the extra damp in ground floor flats. These are the many leaking gutters, drains, downpipes and gullies on the Hanger Hill Garden Estate on which repairs have been neglected for the last decade as amply illustrated on this website.
See also Devon Court Damp Problems overview:
The HHGE flats were built between 1933 -1939 between the First and Second World Wars. The 28 HHGE blocks were well designed with a full complement of gutters, downpipes , drains and gullies to remove rainwater that fell on the roof away from the buildings either into the main drains or into soakaways in the grass lawns distant from the buildings.
Due to extreme neglect since the change of block management from KFH to PMA in 2012 many of these gullies, downpipes and drains are broken and leaking. Instead of removing rain water and waste water away from the base of the buildings this water is now ponding in the clay soil next to your flat.
We believe that this wet soil resulting from HHGE management neglect is the direct cause of the extra condensation in ground floor flats. When you turn your central heating on in winter the warm rising air draws draws up damp air from the void under the floorboards into your flat. This damp air then condenses on the coldest part of your flat usually a rear bedroom wall or the glass in your windows.
The photo above (taken in November 2020) shows a broken gully at the rear of Essex House which takes the waste (grey) water from the sinks and baths/showers in the 3 flats directly above and delivers this grey water to the main drain. This broken gully has been leaking for at least 5 years and has been reported repeatedly to the HHGE management.
From the photo is is clear that the ground around the gully is soaking because of underground cracks in the ceramic drain pipe running between the gully and the main sewer.
Other sources of damp to ground floor flats which in many cases have remained unrepaired for many years include ;
Leaking Downpipes: 14 Thanet Court, blocked & leaking downpipe 14 July 2019
Leaking Gutters:Ayr Court: Leaking gutters and downpipes on 8 July 2020
Blocked Hoppers:SKY GARDENING ON THE FLATS OF THE HHGE