Anger over work at Plymouth residential park
ELDERLY people have been accused of "exaggerating" claims that their residential park has become "unkempt and dirty".
Some of the hundreds of residents at Glenholt Park in north Plymouth contacted The Herald to complain that their surroundings were being neglected.
They said that the debris of demolished homes had been left for up to nine months.
And they said parts of the park were overgrown with brambles and weeds.
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But park manager Samantha Welsh said she believed the residents – who are all over 50 – were exaggerating.
And a spokeswoman for the owners, Morecombe-based Barton Park Homes, denied that the park was in a poor condition.
Residents, who said they were afraid to give their names, told The Herald: "We live here because we are all pensioners.
"We thought we could live out our lives in peace and quiet in glorious surroundings with beautiful views and wildlife on our doorstep.
"Since 2003 this park has gone from pretty and peaceful to unkempt and dirty.
"We are fed up with overgrown brambles and weeds everywhere and dismantled homes which are not cleared away.
"Requests to the owner appear to go unheeded and nothing we ask for gets done."
They said that Barton Park Homes, which took over in 2004, demolished their club building, which was the only place where they could gather and have social events.
"We all pay for amenities and maintenance, which is included in the ground rent," the residents said. "Now we have no amenities and nowhere to hold social evenings.
"The bus that used to service the park has been taken away, so if you don't own a car you are trapped.
"These are people who are often widowed and elderly. Some are disabled and need somewhere to go and meet others and have a coffee and a chat."
They said the park was built on steep ground which made it difficult in a harsh winter.
"Imagine being confined to your home with no means of getting to the shops for food."
One couple told The Herald they bought their home for £85,000 and paid £157 a month in ground rent, which was meant to cover maintenance.
In a statement the company said: "The directors at Barton Park do not agree that the park is in a poor state.
"We are constantly investing money back in to the park and introducing brand new residential homes.
"In order to bring new homes on to the park there is a need to demolish older homes. On some occasions it may look unsightly until the old home has been removed and the new home put in place."
Residents told The Herald that a swimming pool and tennis courts had also been taken away.
But Barton Park said: "This is not a holiday park and we are not catering for holidaymakers who are looking for entertainment such as swimming pools, tennis courts or a clubhouse." The company said the old bus service, which relied on a council subsidy, had been stopped, but that Access Plymouth was looking to provide a "ring and ride" service.