Belfast Telegraph

Court for landlord over failure to fix up OAP’s hovel

By Deborah McAleese

A 76-year-old man who has lived for almost three decades without electricity is terrified that another winter in the dark could kill him.

Pensioner John McCarter’s landlord, a Co Londonderry lawyer, was yesterday summonsed to court for failing to upgrade the house, which has been deemed “unfit for human habitation” by environmental health officials.

Fergus McIntosh was ordered in February by Coleraine Borough Council to provide “adequate arrangement for the provision of artificial lighting to all habitable rooms”, provide “adequate heating” and “adequate ventilation” after environmental health refused his application for a fitness certificate for the property.

He was summonsed to Coleraine Magistrates Court yesterday for failing to carry out repairs at Seacoast Road, Downhill.

His tenant said he is “dreading another winter without proper heating or electricity”.

Two years ago Mr McCarter won a battle with NIE to have the street hooked up with electricity.

The Belfast Telegraph tried to contact Mr McIntosh but was told that he was “not available to take the call”.

We also emailed him, offering him an opportunity to explain why the property has not been upgraded and asking if he intended carrying out the work. At the time of going to Press, Mr McIntosh had not responded.


A Co Derry pensioner won a battle with NIE in 2009 for his street at Downhill to be connected to the national grid so he could have electricity for the first time in 27 years. Although his neighbours now have electricity, John McCarter is still without. His landlord Fergus McIntosh (right) has been summonsed to court.

Belfast Telegraph


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