The elderly residents in Marlow expressed their frustration after a building delay turned their homes into a construction site for the entire summer. 

While the scaffolding has been in place since end of May at the Red Kite- owned Patches Field housing, construction work has hardly started, the residents complained. 

Frederick "Bernie" Hunter lives in a ground floor flat of one of the affected houses by himself after his wife Margaret passed away two years ago following a fight with Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease.  

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The 79-year-old explained the impact the building works delay is having on residents: “It’s depressing for the people here, we’re in the dark, it’s horrendous.

“They put the scaffolding up in May, and it was two weeks before anybody turned up to do anything!

“I really do feel sorry for the people who can’t get out.

Bucks Free Press: The view from Mr Hunter's patio has been blocked by the scaffolding the entire summer..The view from Mr Hunter's patio has been blocked by the scaffolding the entire summer..

“I work with dementia people and other groups and go out, but I would have hated it if Margaret had been at home and all this was going on.”

His neighbour, who is ill with cancer, spends most days at home.

Another resident, who asked to remain anonymous, said the works, including for asbestos, were meant to last only eight weeks until the end of July.

Now the new completion date is August 26, which has nearly doubled the duration of the works.

He said: “The problem with the scaffolding is it turns the elderly residents homes into caves, it’s very depressing and I’m worried for the older residents.”

He felt the scaffolding contractor were making “an excuse after excuse” for the delay, and questioned why workers only showed up on some days.

Red Kite was paying the works from the Red Kite fund, which residents pay into, he claimed.

Mr Hunter said: “They could have left it for another year. The place has been here since 1978 – that’s 40 years.

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“Why couldn’t they leave for a couple of years before they started doing this job? It’s daft.   

“You can’t call it a view!”

Julie Gamble-Kempe, Head of Communications and Brand at Red Kite Community Housing, said: “We would like to apologise to the tenants living in these homes as the scaffolding that was constructed to carry out much-needed work to their roofs has been in place for far longer than we anticipated.

“Unfortunately, our contractor experienced operational issues which led to the delays.

"We are investigating this further with them.

“We have been told by our contractor that work to the roofs will now start on Monday (August 1) and will be completed and the scaffold removed by August 26. A letter was hand-delivered to all tenants on Thursday explaining this to them.

“We would also like to reassure tenants that the cost of delays to this job will not be passed on to them.”