Saturday, March 2, 2024

Not So ‘Warm Front’

by Marie Haddleton
Although this may not be of interest to all of our readers, some (or their elderly relatives), could experience problems with the Government-backed Warm Front Scheme which was designed to ‘help’ elderly/disabled people whose central heating boiler was past its best, by providing and fitting a new boiler FOC.

As an ‘ancient’ citizen myself I took advantage of this scheme and this is a shortened version of what happened, as it may be of assistance:

My CH showed a fault and cut out – I soon found out that Eaga, the Government appointed main contractor, had ‘gone’, so I tried British Gas but they were only interested in obtaining ‘personal information’ including credit card details, date of birth etc. and didn’t even want to discuss the fault! I hung up on them!

A different attitude, however, from the boiler makers – Ideal Boilers – they were most helpful, after a short email and a pic of the installation – the fault was recognised – the water needed topping up – but the necessary ‘filling loop’ was missing and they posted one out immediately FOC.

In the meantime. through a local magazine (very useful things to have! -The Great Barr Gazette) I found two local Central Heating/Plumbing companies who were extremely helpful – one of them – Park Hall Plumbing – relocated the levers and pressure gauge making them more accessible, and after a short time and at a reasonable cost – the central heating was working again.

It is indeed worrying that a scheme designed to ‘help’ vulnerable people meant that in some cases (according to social media) they were left without hot water or heating in the midst of winter, some for several weeks.

I have contacted Age Concern who are increasingly aware of the problem and will also be writing to the Government Minister concerned as the Government have recently circulated a leaflet saying they are about to launch a similar scheme.

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