HOUSING bosses have promised to fix the heating problems that have forced a Helensburgh man to sleep in a woolly hat and tracksuit in his “so cold” flat in town – after the Advertiser got on the case.

David King has lived in a flat owned by Argyll Community Housing Association (ACHA) in Maitland Court for more than four years – and claims that in all that time he’s never had working central heating in the property.

Every room of Mr King’s flat has a radiator, but though they were all switched on when the Advertiser visited the property this week, only one in the hallway was giving very little warmth.

The 67-year-old told the Advertiser he had decided to withhold his rent at Christmas as he felt he’d “had enough”.

He showed the Advertiser a copy of a letter from the housing association threatening him with eviction and court proceedings over his unpaid rent.

Mr King said: "Every night I am going to bed with my hat and a tracksuit top on. It is the only way I can keep warm during the night.

“In the winter months I am so cold. There is nothing I can do to keep myself warm.

David has lived in the property for over four years without working central heatingDavid has lived in the property for over four years without working central heating (Image: Newsquest)

"I want to be in a house where you come in the front door and it is nice and cosy. I have never had that here.

"When I first moved in here, I got a letter from ACHA saying that my central heating will be reviewed, and it has never happened.

"My breathing is not so good now and I’m currently going in and out of the hospital.

“This letter has made me scared about my future as I am settled here.

“I don't think it is fair. I have everything I could need from transport and shops close by."

During last winter the housing association provided David, who suffers with arthritis and peripheral neuropathy, with two fans heaters to help with the cold, but he says they aren’t enough.

"They are obviously admitting that the central heating in this house isn't fit for purpose if they have to supply fans,” he continued.

"I don't think this flat is habitable. I don't have heating or a cooker. I am not paying rent for a house when it is this cold.

"I have very young grandchildren who are my absolute world. There is no way I could have them stay over, especially in the winter because of how cold it gets.

"I don't think it is too much to ask for a warm home. No one should have to live with what I have been going through.

The housing association provided him with two fans to keep him warm over the winter last yearThe housing association provided him with two fans to keep him warm over the winter last year (Image: Newsquest)

“All I want is for the central heating to work."

Fiona Campbell, director of assets and sustainability for ACHA, told the Advertiser: "I have looked into the matter and can advise that all repairs to Mr King’s heating system which have previously been reported to ACHA have been fixed, with the exception of a repair to the bathroom heater in the property, which is arranged to take place on Friday, July 5. 

"ACHA have not been advised of any new issues with the heating system.

"I can also advise that the property is included in this year’s investment programme for a new quantum heating system.

“Staff from our repairs subsidiary, Argyll Homes For All, will be in touch with Mr King in due course to advise of an installation date.

"I can advise that ACHA members of staff have been endeavouring to engage with Mr King to assist him in managing his rent account. 

"This has proven problematic due to a number of reasons, however we have recently made contact with Mr King and arrangements have been made to visit him at his home to discuss his rent account."