ANDREW PARSONS has proved once again the true colours of the professional roofing community, by coming to the rescue of a Lancashire couple after they’d been left with a dangerous leaking roof and shoddy workmanship.
Homeowner, Carl, and his partner who is a nurse, live in Morecambe. As lockdown began in March 2020, Carl’s partner decided he would move out of the couple’s home and stay temporarily near Lancaster Royal Hospital where he works, to help with the Covid-19 pandemic and also avoid bringing home the infection to Carl.
After three months of working intensely on the Covid wards, Carl’s partner was due some leave. Carl decided that he would get some work done on the house to welcome his partner back home after all his hard work and sacrifices nursing covid patients during the peak of the pandemic.
“I wanted him to be able to come back to a nice relaxing house”, says Carl, “After all he’d been though on the wards, I didn’t want him thinking he had to start doing DIY jobs.”
Local Firm of Builders
He contacted a local firm of builders who quoted for the work, which included a new roof and work on an exterior wall and bay window.
Carl was asked to pay a deposit of £3,600 for the work. The weather was glorious and the builders made a start on 26 April. They stripped the roof and work started on replacing the underlay and battens before fixing the new tiles and rooflights.
Next there were repairs to the pebble dashed exterior wall and once the roof was finished Carl paid the builders a further £5,000 for the roof and £1,500 for materials, totalling payments to the builder of £9,600 altogether.
It was only a few days later that several defects came to light, including gaps and shoddy workmanship to the ridges, valleys and eaves. Gutters had been left full of mortar and debris and there were gaps in the roof over a bay window. “It was in a worse state than when they started”, says Carl.
Carl contacted the builders who promised to return the next day but didn’t turn up. After several attempts at further contact, Carl had to accept the building contractor had blocked his number.
Kind-hearted neighbour Elaine Ashton posted the story on Facebook, which was where roofer hero, Andy Parsons heard about Carl’s plight. He offered to volunteer, completely free of charge, to spend his weekend putting the roof right.
“When I saw that post on Facebook, I thought it was disgusting the state the roof had been left in and offered my services”, said Andy Parsons. “If you can help out when things like that happen, it makes a better world for all of us.”
Andy, who works for Kendall Quality Roofing told his workmates about Carl’s roof and was joined by one of his colleagues on the job.
With donations from Northwest Roofing Supplies and Think Pink Skips, and joined by AJ Plastering doing the work to the wall, Andy was able to strip away the shoddy work by the cowboy builders and rectify the roof to make it watertight. “It was a shocking standard of work on that roof,” Andy said.
Andy found that most of the tiles weren’t fastened. There were no half cut tiles at the gable ends and the flashing round the rooflight was missing. He also corrected the pointing on the chimney stack and re-installed a front apron.
Carl couldn’t thank Andy enough for his generous volunteering of his time and skills. “I can’t believe it”, Carl said. “It’s overwhelming to realise there’s such kind and nice people. It’s helped to restore my faith in humanity and brought good out of such a bad experience.”