Fire safety is our top priority and we want to do everything we can to ensure your safety while you’re at home. That is why we introduced the Clear Corridors policy in 2020, taking a firm approach against allowing any items in communal areas which can be easily set alight, support the growth of a fire or that restrict access in or out of your block.
We have now updated the policy (November 2021) to address feedback from residents.
What are residents allowed to keep in communal areas?
- Corridors over 1m wide in Sheltered Housing: a maximum of two ceramic or non-flammable metal plant pots of live plants only (walkway clearance after pots must be minimum 1m)
- All other open walkways over 1m wide: a doormat and a maximum of two ceramic or non-flammable metal plant pots of live plants only (walkway clearance after pots must be minimum 1m)
- All other enclosed corridors over 1m wide: a doormat only
Anything in the communal area must be fire proof, and not restrict access in case of an emergency. Lewisham Homes reserves the right to make a judgment on items removed.
If in doubt, please contact your housing officer or our environment team.
What will happen to my belongings?
Corridors and communal areas must be fire safe and free from obstruction. As a general rule, we will remove ALL items from the communal areas, other than those mentioned above.
Lewisham Homes reserves the right to remove any and all items without notice, however we will, where reasonable, provide warnings. Warnings will generally be in the form of stickers attached to or left near to unpermitted items and will advise that the items must be removed immediately. Lewisham Homes will at any time thereafter and without further notice return and remove items. No warnings will be given for high risk items such as objects which are highly flammable or that block access routes.
Depending on the value, items will either be disposed of straight away or stored for 28 days.
You will be charged a fee of £50 to have stored items returned to you.
How do I get my items back?
Please call or email the Lewisham Homes Environment Team for advice. In most instances our team will return the removed item/s to the address from which they were taken, but only after the return fee of £50 has been paid via the Lewisham Homes online shop.
Items of high value and significant risk such as motorbikes will be removed immediately to the outside of the block, they will always be moved to a safe place and secured.
I can’t afford to pay £50, what can I do?
You can make an application to pay by instalments, this is worked out as £10 per month for 5 months. Failure to pay will result in further action being taken.
If your mobility scooter is left in your shared corridor/shared open balcony we will do our best to make contact with you in order to discuss more suitable storage options.
Alterations to blocks
Sometimes people make alterations to their corridors such as installing gates (across walkways) and shelving. We don’t allow this. We will refer this to our repair department for removal and may charge you a fee to cover the cost.
How do I get rid of large items?
For residents in blocks of flats with a caretaker service Lewisham Homes provides a lumber collection service for large unwanted items. For more information call 0800 028 2028 (option 7, then option 2).
If you live in a house or a street property you will need to take any bulky items to the Reuse and Recycling Centre or arrange and in most instances pay for Lewisham Council to collect them. If you leave items at a bulk collection point, we’ll consider it to be illegally dumped waste or fly-tipping.
I know someone who constantly leaves items in the communal area
You can report this to us anonymously, any evidence you have will help with our investigations. Repeat offenders will be dealt with by our Antisocial Behaviour team, this could result in an injunction.
See the policy document in full here [PDF]: Clear-Corridors-Policy.202111