June 24, 2017

Carlex patron Sir Ed Davey returns to Parliament

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LKP’s LibDem patron Sir Ed Davey was returned to Parliament at the election for the Conservative held seat Kingston and Surbiton.

He rejoins Sir Peter Bottomley, Conservative, Worthing West, and Jim Fitzpatrick, Labour, Poplar and Limehouse, after having lost his seat in the 2015 election.

LKP warmly welcomes the return to public life of Sir Ed, the former Energy Secretary during the Coalition Government.

In 2009, Ed held the earliest Commons meeting of Carlex, the Campaign Against Retirement Leasehold Exploitation, which is the sister organisation of LKP.

His full Carlex archive is here http://www.carlex.org.uk/?s=ed+davey

He was also a strong ally during the Carlex intiative into the collusive tendering scam at 65 retirement sites by the property manager Peverel (now FirstPort).

Peverel’s subsidiary systematically cheated pensioners with bogus bids for electronic door entry systems where the contracts were won by its subsidiary Cirrus.

The Office of Fair Trading made the ruling of collusive tendering, but there was no criminal or civil sanction.

Two of the three stooge companies that put in bogus bids against Cirrus promptly went bust and avoided censure.

No one at Peverel / Cirrus lost their job.

Peverel made a £100,000 “goodwill gesture” to compensate the cheated pensioners.

Ed was a powerful voice calling for justice.

He was also a strong supporter of Charter Quay in Kingston, the prime riverside site where LKP trustee Martin Boyd is chairman of the residents.

Here Martin orchestrated litigation that won back more than £500,000 in overpaid service charges to Peverel and the head lease owner – via “quasi Biblical complexity”, according to a judge – Vincent Tchenguiz, whose Tchenguiz Family Trust vehicle is based in the British Virgin Islands.

In July 2013 Ed was guest of honour at the fete to celebrate the leaseholders buying the freehold.

Cabinet minister celebrates Charter Quay ‘independence day’ as it breaks free from ‘monstrous companies’: Tchenguiz and Peverel

The residents paid under £900,000 for the head lease under the terms of an acquisition order, although unaccountably it had been valued on the Tchenguiz books at £3.2 million.

The discrepancy of values has never been explained.

While we welcome Sir Ed Davey back to the Commons, we pay recognition and thanks to the contributions to leasehold reform of his Conservative predecessor, James Berry, who was a member of the All Party Parliamentary Group on leasehold reform.

Two other former Conservative MPs who served on the APPG but fell at the election were Oliver Colvile in Plymouth and Stewart Jackson in Peterborough.

We thank them for their contribution to the cause of reforming leasehold laws.

We also pay tribute to Gavin Barwell, the former housing minister, who lost his Croydon Central seat.

Mr Barwell, and his Secretary of State Sajid Javid, understood the issues of leasehold houses and onerous ground rents and were reviewing government policy to disadvantaged buyers, many of who had used the Help To Buy scheme.

Comments

  1. Carlex £900,000 million for a freehold worth £3.2 million surely not???

  2. Welcome back Sir Ed Davey.

    Hope you become the new Housing Minister as Gavin Barwell the former HM, who was seen to understand the plight of leaseholders has lost his seat.

    Mr Barwell, and his Secretary of State Sajid Javid, understood the issues of leasehold regarding ground rents and the scams undertaken by Firstport Retirement where they relieved pensioners of their hard earned money paid into contingency funds in the guise of:-
    Obsolete Fire Systems
    Obsolete Warden Call Systems
    Painting Contracts
    Insurance Commissions
    Duplicated Training Costs
    Relief Area Managers Costs

    Katie Kendrick has the right attitude and fight.

  3. Ed Davey was as you stated “a strong ally during the Carlex initiative into the collusive tendering scam at 65 retirement sites by the property manager Peverel (now FirstPort Retirement).

    CARLEX help alert pensioners who had purchased leasehold flats for what was expected according to Firstport literature a peaceful retirement?

    Firstport Retirement subsidiary Cirrus Communications, now Appello systematically cheated pensioners with bogus bids for Warden Call Electronic Door Entry Systems and Fire Systems by stating “these systems are OBSOLETE”.

    The Office of Fair Trading made the ruling of Collusive Tendering, but there was no criminal or civil sanction. I asked the OFT for information regarding the Collusive Tendering under the Freedom of Information Act and was informed it was not in the PUBLIUC INTEREST?

    No one at Peverel / Cirrus lost their job, we were informed by the then CEO in 2015, no one involved in the
    Collusive Tendering still worked for Firstport which was not correct as the manager of Cirrus at the time was now a director?

    Peverel made a £100,000 “goodwill gesture” to compensate the 65 development some 2,000 cheated residents? Considering they weren’t prosecuted and allowed to continue trading, Firstport made £1.4 Million Pounds and repaid £100k, not a bad exchange?

  4. Sorry Spell Checker doesn’t work on capitals should have read:

    PUBLIC INTEREST

  5. Michael Epstein says:

    Welcome back Ed Davey and it seems welcome back to Chas as well!

  6. Michael,

    Thank you,

    My break coincided with a move to a new house – not leasehold.

  7. Michael,
    I tried to post this on LKP but it didn’t post, hope its helpful?

    With private housing in crisis with shortages and big building companies selling Leasehold Housing which are imploding day by day. Wouldn’t it be something if a Housing Minister was appointed until they completed a fixed term rather than using the position as the first rung up the ladder for budding cabinet members?

    Longevity in ministerial life and the high turnover of Housing Ministers. 
    Gavin Barwell was the fourteenth since 1997.
    Conservatives five in six years:
    2017 to ???
    Gavin Barwell July 2016 to 2017
    Brandon Lewis July 2014 to July 2016
    Kris Hopkins October 2013 to July 2014
    Mark Prisk September 2012 to October 2013
    Grant Shapps June 2010 to September 2012
    Labo20ur’s record is no better nine in thirteen years:
    John Healey June 2009 to June 2010
    Margaret Beckett October 2008 to June 2009
    Caroline Flint January 2008 to October 2008
    Yvette Cooper 2005 to January 2008
    Keith Hill 2003 to 2005
    Lord Rooker 2002 to 2003
    Lord Falconer 2001 to 2002
    Nick Raynsford 1999 to 2001
    Hilary Armstrong 1997 to 1999

    • Uncertainty for leasehold as Gavin Barwell Housing Minister loses his seat

      Gavin Barwell the Tory MP and Housing Minister, who had it seems grasped the need to reshape the leasehold sector. He mentioned his commitment to fully fund the Leasehold Advisory Service. This would remove the need of commercial activity used to help fund the service. Due to chronic underfunding the  service decided to provide access to the Landlord and Freeholder above the Leaseholder.

      Can we now expect anything after the 15th Housing Minister since 1997, twenty years of paid lip service. The 2002 ACT didn’t go far enough and still the Leaseholder is made the villain when attempting to correct matters at the FTT.

      Louie Burns, of Leasehold Solutions, said: “That while the policies of both parties are a step in the right direction, neither will bring about much-needed reforms. He said: “It was encouraging to see that both the Conservatives and Labour were paying attention to some of the problems with leasehold, such as escalating ground rents and the sale of new-build houses as leasehold, particularly as neither party even mentioned leasehold in their 2015 manifestos. “The Conservative Party manifesto included a commitment to crack down on unfair practices in leasehold. No mention of the 10 year fight against the likes of Peverel and Firstport who have been using unfair tactics to spend residents money so excessive profits are made at our expense.

      Leaseholders can take some reassurance that leasehold campaigners, Sir Peter Bottomley and Jim Fitzpatrick were both re-elected.

  8. Wasn’t Grant Shapps supposed to have been a saviour when he was first appointed now we have Gavin Barwell who was the next saviour loose his seat and we end up nowhere.

    Good job we have the support of Carlex and LKP along with About Peverel and the support of 57 MP but will we now be put on the back burner again

  9. Michael Hollands says:

    Chas, l don’t think Grant Shapps was ever expected to be the saviour, in fact as far as leasehold reform goes he turned out to be the executioner. And that was from day one.
    Starting from such a low and negative point, and with the DCLG in tow it meant that the four Housing Ministers who succeeded him made very little progress.
    Now that this Leasehold Houses and Ground Rent issue has arisen it will be much more difficult for the next Minister to keep a lid on things, but I won’t hold my breath.
    Another Grant Shapps type, plus the negative DCLG, and Brexit, could still put this issue on the back burner.

    • Michael,

      You posted – ” l don’t think Grant Shapps (GS) was ever expected to be the saviour, in fact as far as leasehold reform goes he turned out to be the executioner.

      Was GS removed due to his other jobs where he used another name?

      With some MPs and family very involved in Freehold/Landlords no wonder little progress has been made. Turkeys do not vote for Christmas.

      Now that Leasehold Houses and Ground Rent issue has arisen will it be much more difficult for the next Minister to keep a lid on things?

      Six Housing Ministers in less than 7 years?

      The concept of Building Control is based on H&S, and like all other industries the Lobbyist are used to reduce the cost of safety, or to use their products or use their company?

      Remember materials are tested to destruction and require a BS or Agremont Certificate before given a BS?

  10. Trevor Bradley says:

    Michael H is correct. Grant S showed total arrogance towards leaseholders, and any other “ordinary” decent people.
    The following ministers inc Gavin B may have been ” interested” but they did and achieved nothing.
    The fact we have brexit is irrelevant. Whoever it is will just have to work harder, and longer hours to achieve what is needed, just like we have to in the private sector in order to survive

  11. Welcome back Sir Ed Davey.

    I support Chas in hoping you become the new Housing Minister .( as Nominee for the APPG ).

  12. Hi Ollie
    Welcome back!

    • Is this how Leashold Industry Works
      According to Parliament’s register of interests, 72 of the MPs who voted against a Labour Party proposed amendment in 2016 were themselves landlords who derive an income from a property.
      The amendment to the Government’s new Housing and Planning Bill – that would required private landlords to make their homes safe and “fit for human habitation” in 2016, was rejected by the Conservative Party. According to Parliament’s register of interests, 72 of the MPs who voted against the amendment were themselves landlords who derive an income from property.

      According to Grenfell Action Group (GAG) the freeholder is the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea (RBKC) using Kensington & Chelsea Tenant Management Organisation as the landlord who  manage all the social housing in RBKC. 

      Grenfell Action Group had  issued numerous warnings regarding safety. One of these mentioned “only a catastrophic event will expose the ineptitude and incompetence of our landlord”…. “and bring an end to the dangerous living conditions and neglect of health and safety legislation that they inflict upon their tenants and leaseholders”.

      Another comment posted in 2015 warned: “Let’s hope we won’t have any serious fires on any of those estates because it appears that someone’s death is possibly the only thing that might stir the KCTO out of its extreme complacency.”

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