Month: March 2007

Summary of February 2007 Board Meeting

Caretakers report

A new pressurisation unit has been fitted to the central heating system. It is hoped that this will resolve the problem of intermittent heat and hot water supply reaching certain flats.

The new lamps in the stairwells are overheating and burning out the bulbs. The original electrician and the suppliers would be contacted to find a remedy.

The cleaning contractors are providing a better service since a recent change of personnel.

Company business

The managing agents have produced a schedule of flat owners to be checked against the share register kept by the Company Secretary.

Legal advice has been sought concerning the viability of extending the existing leases which were originally for 125 years from 1987. The directors agreed to include this in their plan for 2007/8.

The annual accounts for the year ending September 2006 are with the auditors and should be released in early March for discussion at the next general meeting in April.

Arrears

Action is proceeding against four flat owners that are in substantial arrears with the service charge. County Court judgement has been obtained against two flat owners and this is now being enforced.

Mains water

There was much discussion of the forthcoming mains water supply works. It was agreed that the Ashworth Mansions Ltd and its advisors should be committed to minimising potential noise nuisance from the new pumps. Best practice would be used wherever possible and a visit will be organised to a similar block that has faced the same problems. The project will be complicated and it was agreed that the services of a professional project manager will be retained.

Noting that the existing water tanks, situated above the main entrance of each block, will need to be maintained until all flats are on the mains water, it was agreed to commission a detailed survey report and to obtain prices to keep them good order.

Asbestos

Following a report from Air Surveys, a specialist consultant, the board were advised that the probable incremental cost of the asbestos removals from the old bike shed will result in the total cost of all asbestos removals exceeding the threshold for consultation with leaseholders. It was agreed that a Section 20 consultation be circulated along with the advice obtained from Air Surveys. It was also agreed that budget prices to complete the works be obtained.

Noise

Legal advice has been sought regarding enforcement of the lease provisions for flats to be substantially carpeted. There was much discussion about whether the board could reasonably consent to flat owners installing properly insulated wooden flooring subject to the noise nuisance terms of the lease remaining.

Repairs and maintenance

  • The leaking roof in Block 1 has been repaired following repair work to the parapet and box gutter.
  • National Grid Transco is running a new gas main to the rear of the Grantully Road block.
  • It was noted that the retaining walls on the Grantully Road side are showing signs of cracking and should be inspected. It was also noted that there were a number of areas of moss growing on the brickwork and the managing agent was asked to propose a cost-effective way of removing it.
  • The works in the bicycle store are in hand and should be complete by early March.
  • It was noted that repair work to one flat had not been carried out effectively and another contractor would be engaged.
  • Two contractors have been approached to provide quotes for damp-proofing one of the ground floor flats.
  • Two ground floor flats are suffering from excessively smelly drains. In an effort to resolve the problems, the board has instructed its surveyor to consider undertaking a full survey via CCTV.
  • Consent was granted for a bathroom refurbishment of another flat.
  • Quotations are still awaited to pollard the plane trees on the Elgin Avenue side.
  • No formal date has yet been set for Manilva to return to Ashworth Mansions to complete the snagging following the redecoration of the stairwells. The managing agents will chase the matter.

If you’ve got any questions about the above, please send them to board@ashworthmansions.com

Ashworth Mansions in 1910

Ashworth Mansions, Elgin Avenue, Maida Vale 1910

This postcard shows Ashworth Mansions in 1910. Note the dark window frames, implausibly steep chimneys and the awnings on the first floor balconies. Elgin Avenue is a tranquil boulevard and the Plane Trees are mere saplings.  You can just about see the spire of St Mark’s Church, Hamilton Terrace, in the background.

203 Elgin Avenue, the only detached house on the street, is at the left foreground. Paul Mortimer Francke, a single barrister, lived there until his death following a bicycle accident on Maida Vale in 1929. It is likely to be his three servants that are standing on the steps.

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