Man’s stairlift bid blocked by landlords

Gordon Nicholson
Gordon Nicholson

AN elderly man has been told he cannot install a stairlift at his property by his private landlord.

Gordon Nicholson, 81, has started to struggle to with the stairs leading to his first floor flat which he shares with his 70-year-old wife Gail, who would also benefit from a stairlift being installed.

But Guinness Partnership, who the Nicholson’s privately rent their flat on Brockhurst Walk, Worsley Mesnes, have told them that for health and safety reasons they cannot let them install a stairlift.

Mr Nicholson said: “My wife is 70 and she struggles up the stairs now and I do to.

“I couldn’t list all of my health problems. I have got asbestosis, heart problems and a pacemaker so I thought we would get a stairlift.

“It is a four block set of flats and there is a lady who lives opposite us. When I applied to install the stairlift they said I couldn’t because of health and safety.”

But Mr Nicholsaon says he has seen flats with a similar set up with a stairlift before and doesn’t understand why their block is any different.

He said: “I don’t see why other people in flats with the same set up have been allowed one and we aren’t.

“They have said we could move flat to a ground floor one but we don’t want to move.

“We have lived here for 30 years and we have so much stuff. I modified the flat to suit our needs when I was about 30 and I wouldn’t be able to do that in a new place because I was younger then.”

But a spokesman for The Guinness Partnership said that because the staircase is narrow, installing a stairlift could put residents at risk in the event of a fire.

A spokesperson for The Guinness Partnership said: “We’re sorry we are unable to agree to Mr Nicholson’s request to install a stairlift in the communal stairway at Brockhurst Walk.

“The staircase is narrow and it’s imperative it is kept clear for the safety of all our residents in the event of a fire. There is also a risk of it being misused or damaged by other residents using the shared staircase.

“We are in regular contact with Mr Nicholson and we hope he’ll accept our offer of a meeting to discuss how we can help him move to a home that’s more appropriate for his mobility needs.

“We are also planning to arrange for an occupational therapist to visit him to see if there are other ways his needs can be addressed while enabling him to remain in his current flat.”