Lewisham Homes is making some adjustments to services following the introduction of the national lockdown on 4 January (see government guidance here), and in response to the sharp increase in numbers of infections across the borough.
The government has indicated that construction and maintenance works should continue. However, we have opted to postpone works inside residents’ homes, with some exceptions.
We will continue to fit front entry and communal fire doors using a tented enclosure system to protect the safety of residents, staff and contractors. It is a statutory requirement that we proceed with these vital fire safety upgrades. All other works inside homes will be put on hold, except for emergency repairs.
We will continue to fit new windows only on our three blocks at Hatfield Close and Gerrard House, where they form part of our re-cladding work. We have developed a specific Covid-safe procure for this to take place.
On the Pepys estate, fire compartmentation and electrical upgrades to communal areas will continue. We believe the Covid situation and lockdowns have increased the urgency of these works, not least concerning the replacement of the lateral mains, given the electricity demand from more residents staying in their home. We intend to continue with the works as long as we can do so while observing the Covid-19 safe operating procedures developed in line with government, health and safety executive (HSE) and construction leadership council guidance.
Work to enclosed communal areas elsewhere will be put on hold, unless linked to fire safety upgrades (e.g. fire compartmentation works or fire doors as noted above).
External work, e.g. on roofs and external decorations, and any work to vacant properties, will continue as planned.
Our environment team is putting additional safeguards in place to help keep residents and staff safe during the lockdown. These measures include:
- Prioritising the daily cleaning and sanitisation of shared sanitary facilities in Independent Living (sheltered) accommodation, and temporary stay hostels
- Sanitising high-frequency touch points, such as communal door handles and lift panels, in all our estates
- Minimising the contact our employees have with each other and with residents by reducing the time they spend on site
We may need to adjust the frequency of lower priority caretaking tasks and grounds maintenance. However, we will ensure fire checks and removal of bulk waste continues, and maintain capacity to respond to urgent requests and essential work, seven days a week.
We will continue to review our services in response to any changes in government guidance.