Landlord fined over dangerous properties

St Helens town hall
St Helens town hall

Two St Helens landlords have been hit with £1,000 fines after they admitted serious failures to maintain rental properties to acceptable standards.

Cedric Fitzpatrick, landlord of 72 Morris Street, Sutton, pleaded guilty at Liverpool, Knowsley and St Helens Magistrates Court, charged with failure to comply with housing improvement notices.

While some progress was made after St Helens Council issued improvement notices under the Housing Act 2004, Mr Fitzpatrick failed to rectify damp that permeated throughout the house, and did not install a continuous and secure handrail to the length of the staircase or form a balustrade of sound and substantial construction to the staircase which were both identified as a fall hazards within the property.

Mr Fitzpatrick was fined £500 per offence (£1000 in total), was ordered to pay a contribution towards costs of £1700 and a £120 victim surcharge, totalling £2,820.

Linda Williams, landlord of 42 Siddeley Drive, Newton-le-Willows was similarly charged and pleaded guilty.

Upon inspection of the property, it was found that the felt covering to the roof of the utility room was torn and the plywood of the sub-roof was exposed.

This left the room vulnerable to rain and wind posing an excess cold hazard. The roof leaked into the utility room making the ceiling and walls damp and the floor wet and slippery, posing a further hazard.

Ms Williams was sentenced to a fine of £250 per offence (£500 in total) and ordered to pay court costs in full of £1059.87, totalling £1559.87.