A pensioner was left in a damp flat so cold it felt “like the Antarctic” for years - despite assurances she would receive double-glazing.

Tina Hurst, who is in her 60s, moved into the Hackney flat owned by housing association Peabody in 2016, and requested double-glazing in 2018 after experiencing “damp patches” and cold.

For the last three years, a gap between the window frame and Tina’s bedroom wall has exacerbated the problem.

Hackney Gazette: Tina said that a gap appeared between a window frame and her bedroom wall for more than three yearsTina said that a gap appeared between a window frame and her bedroom wall for more than three years (Image: Tina Hurst)

A letter sent to Tina by Peabody in April 2018 promised that external works to her flat, including an upgrade to her windows, would be completed by March 2019.

When this did not happen, Tina’s GP and local MP Meg Hillier wrote to Peabody.

Earlier this month, work to upgrade Tina’s windows was finally completed, more than five years after her initial request.

Tina, who survived a battle with cancer and suffers from osteoporosis, said the wait had taken a “toll” on her health.

She told Hackney Gazette: “I’m a pensioner now, and if you come out of the shower it’s like the Antarctic. This flat is like a fridge in the winter.

“It’s stressed me out, it’s really affected me.

“My anxiety has got worse because of this – I have been going back and forth [with Peabody], writing letters.

“I went through a period where I couldn’t go out because I got so wound up with it all.”

Hackney Gazette: Tina said that she had damp patches on her wallsTina said that she had damp patches on her walls (Image: Tina Hurst)

Peabody said the five-year delay was partially because the programme of window replacement in Tina’s flat “needed planning permission”.

A letter sent to Tina by Peabody at the end of 2018 said the association would apply for planning permission “before the end of January 2019”.

But records on Hackney Council’s planning portal show Peabody only did so in February 2022 - and permission was granted in December that year.

The housing association has offered to compensate Tina £300 for poor complaint handling and “time, trouble and inconvenience”.

But Tina claims this is not enough, and that she is owed at least £1,000 for each year she has suffered problems.

Tina said: “It’s a justice thing for me, it’s not just the money”

A spokesperson for Peabody said: “Unfortunately, the work to Ms Hurst’s windows needed planning permission and it took time to source the necessary materials.

“We’re very sorry this has taken so long, and we'll do everything we can to put this right for our resident.”  

They added that Tina reported mould to them earlier this year and that it has since been removed.

The spokesperson said that the housing association had contacted her and would make a follow-up appointment “to find a lasting solution”.