A RETIRED Winchester firefighter has branded the city council “incompetent” after a six-year dispute about redecoration.

Andy Tait has privately owned his two-storey flat in Lower Brook Street for nine years, and since 2013, he has been asking the council, the freeholders of the building, to decorate the flooring in the hallway.

Now, with the floor still as it was when he moved in, the 56 year-old has put his property on the market, and says his experience with the council has “left a bitter taste in his mouth”.

Andy said: “I’m now in the seventh year of trying to sort this out, and this is the seventh year of them doing nothing. I’ve been pushed from pillar to post and I just don’t know what I need to do to get them to do their jobs.

“The council are responsible for the maintenance of the building, yet they have no record of ever decorating the inside since they were built in the 60s.”

According to Andy, the green paint currently on the floor had been applied by his former colleague who lived in the block 12 years ago.

He added: “Everytime I’ve spoken to somebody, I’ve not sworn, I’ve remained calm, and I’ve called them out fairly, but I’m just told what I supposedly want to hear. It’s got to the point where I need to shame them.”

“It’s not as if I’m asking for much. I’ve told them, all that needs putting down is some vinyl flooring in the hall and up the stairs to tidy up the place, and that I would do the walls myself, because that would take too long to sort out themselves.

Andy met council leader Caroline Horrill in early April, but claims he has not heard back from her.

The council said: “Providing good quality housing for residents is very important to us, so we have been in discussions with Mr Tait to hear his concerns and work with him to address them. We are currently consulting leaseholders and tenants on improvement works to the communal areas of the flats at 2-22A Lower Brook Street, Winchester.”