July 20, 2024

Homepine House involves MPs after Kent Fire Service says Peverel £70,000 ’elf ’n’ safety upgrade is unnecessary

Pensioners in Homepine House in Folkestone face £70,000 fire safety upgrade that the local fire service says is not needed

Pensioners in Homepine House face £70,000 fire safety upgrade that the local fire service says is not needed

Residents in Homepine House are involving MPs Damian Collins and Sir Peter Bottomley after being presented with a £58,000-£70,000 fire safety upgrade from Peverel, which they say is unnecessary.

Kent Fire & Rescue Service also says the upgrade is unnecessary.

In a letter to residents of December 12 2012, it writes: “Following the fire safety audit of the above premises on 7 December 2012, I am of the opinion that the premises currently demonstrate suitable and sufficient measures to satisfy the requirements of the above legislation.”

Furious residents have signed a second petition on the issue stating that they do not want the upgrade.

Now it is involving local Tory MP Damian Collins, while also urging Sir Peter Bottomley to take up the case.

A full meeting between residents and Peverel is scheduled for June 17.

Peverel responded to Campaign against retirement leasehold exploitation on May 20 over this issue, saying: “An upgrade of the fire system is due at Homepine House to ensure the development complies with current fire safety regulations.”

The full article is here


Resident Alan Eadie has written to Peverel on June 4:

I write in reply to your letter of 8th May 2013, reference 10033000037, regarding the proposed works to upgrade the Fire System at Homepine House at Folkestone.  I must say that I was very surprised to receive this letter, as you must know the residents of Homepine House submitted a Petition to Peverel in November 2012 making very clear they did not want this upgrade.  In addition, the attached letter from the Folkestone Fire Safety Office was submitted to Peverel in December 2012.  Following an audit by the Fire Safety Inspector (taking place after the ‘so called’ Cardinus Fire Risk Assessment) this letter makes clear they regard the Fire System at Homepine House to fully satisfy the present legislation.  So why do you still wish to upgrade the present system, that is well known to the Kent Fire and Rescue Service to be perfectly adequate?

To the best of my knowledge and belief Peverel have made no attempt to either (a) answer the Petition from the residents of Homepine House, or (b) respond to the letter of the 12 December from the Kent Fire and Rescue Service.  Why is this?  It is well known that the Courts in the past have criticised Peverel for treating their residents with “arrogance” and for “the intentional hiding of information to which residents would have been entitled”.  Yet, here we go again!  Still no lessons learnt!  The former disgraceful Peverel culture clearly still pervades throughout the organisation!

Why are Peverel treating the residents of Homepine House with such arrogance over this issue?  Of the residents at Homepine House I have spoken to, there is clearly much anger and disgust that Peverel should still intend to proceed.  Indeed, I have no doubt in my mind, should Peverel proceed with this upgrade, the strength of this anger is such that there will be an application made to the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal Service and/or for Right To Manage so as to obtain a Managing Agent who will treat their residents with respect.

When Peverel went out to tender for the Fire Risk Assessment Service, they did not ask a single member of the Fire Risk Engineers Trade Body to quote!!  It is now obvious why Peverel did not want a known qualified body to do this work!  With the exorbitant cost of the Cardinus Service (£1656 in the financial year 2011/2012 compared with nil in previous years, undertaken by trained Peverel staff) to produce a fire assessment report, is it surprising Cardinus will say whatever Peverel want them to say?  So, whom do you really think any reasonable person (let alone an LVT) would believe, when it comes to deciding between the credibility of (i) the Fire Service or (ii) the unqualified staff of Cardinus, regarding the Fire System at Homepine House?


  1. Michael Epstein says

    It is hard to credit the mess that Peverel get themselves into.
    Bascally, the situation at Homepine House is that the Kent Fire Brigade and the residents are perfectly satisfied with the current fire safety precautions. Only a non- accredited company (Cardinus) with a vested interest in making a report helpful to their client and a property management company(Peverel) desperate to increase their income have found a need for improvements.
    Given that Peverel have the Kent Fire Brigade report, if they attempt to force through the work, Homepine House residents will apply to the LVT and Peverel will lose the case.
    So doubtless, they will try and find a way around the problem they have created. Perhaps another “confidentiality clause” is on the horizon?
    The hole that Peverel have dug themselves into this time, is that if they accept the Kent Fire Brigade report and do not go ahead with the work, then it follows they must reject the Cardinus report.
    So that means residents will have paid for a report by Cardinus who were appointed by Peverel, who subsequently rejected the report.
    This being the case, would it not invalidate other Cardinus reports on other developments?
    For residents who have had a Cardinus report would it not be a good idea to appoint the local fire brigade to carry out a fire safety report.
    It may cost residents a few pounds each, but they could save thousands.
    Now if residents made it clear to Peverel that they wanted any fire survey to be done by the local fire brigade, that they were willing to pay for the survey and that they would accept the findings of such a survey, it would look very odd if Peverel refused would it not?

    • “This being the case, would it not invalidate other Cardinus reports on other developments?
      For residents who have had a Cardinus report would it not be a good idea to appoint the local fire brigade to carry out a fire safety report.”

      We had a Cardinus fire safety report done here but the residents have not had sight of it, including the invoice, so we have no idea how much it cost either! Just another Peverel rip-off.

      The Homepine House residents are doing a good job that could affect us all. We were never consulted about Cardinus and we knew nothing about this company until I discovered a previous insurance re-evaluation certificate was missing from a Peverel file. When I reported the missing document I found out about the Cardinus fire safety report and the new hugely inflated insurance re-evaluation carried out by a bogus unqualified ‘surveyor’…

  2. A Reviewer says


    As a Chartered Engineer, I remain utterly appalled with the total lack of technical knowledge exhibited by peverel.

    on our estate they are supposed to conduct running inspections. they are utterly incapable of scheduling inspections let alone defining the inspections to be made, let alone carrying out the inspections.

    actually our drains need clearing regularly – all you have to do is tap the end cap of the rodding eye. a thunk says its blocked !

    there really ought to be a minimum standard of TECHNICAL qualification. the use of cardinus amply demonstrates this.

    there ought to be a regulatory body which oversees this requirement.

    actually it would be all to easy …
    a) a standard od competence needs to be set
    b) property mangers must be assessed to iso9001 to ensure they meet such standard
    c) non qualifying firms will be issued a three month warning and then be disqualified

    when you see the “woolmark” you KNOW what you are getting …

    happy days

    • Peverel has only one National Technical Adviser left now Barry Everitt. He had a team of about 10 at one time.

      The NHBC together with Peverel carried out a drainage inspection of the flooding in the underground car park here in April and I heard only yesterday from the NHBC to say they have only now received the report and we will still not get the results of that and the claim for a few weeks yet.

      My questions are:

      1. Why does Barry Everitt or the Area Manager not chase up the NHBC.
      2. Why aren’t the residents kept informed of progress?
      3. How does it take 3 – 4 months to produce a drainage report?

  3. OMhostage says

    What if the inspections never happened? What if the records of the inspections were faked? What if fire safety systems were certified as working when in fact they weren’t?

    If you knew such things could and did happen you might be very keen to do some outsourcing as fast as possible.

  4. Michael Epstein says

    Like you Fleeced i cannot understand how it can take Peverel 3-4 months to produce a drainage report..
    It is not as if they have to go far, since they in the world of property management are a;ready in the sewer!