May 21 2013 Latest news:
by Flora Drury
Sunday, June 17, 2012
This Muswell Hill pensioner must be feeling a sense of de-ja vu, 21 years after first hitting the headlines with his leaky driveway.
Ken Aylott made the front page of the Hornsey Journal on Thursday, September 19, 1991, with a leaky pipe which Thames Water was refusing to fix – despite the fact London was under a hose-pipe ban to help save water.
Fast-forward more than two decades to another drought, and Mr Aylott, now 76, is again battling Thames Water to fix the pipe which is creating puddles once more outside his garage, in Colney Hatch Lane.
Both times Mr Aylott has been told by Thames Water it is a private pipe and so they cannot fix it– although last time, the company did eventually fix the pipe.
Exasperated Mr Aylott said: “It is exactly the same position – you could nearly have a copy of the same picture.”
Mr Aylott says he still does not know who owns the pipe, which carries water to the flats behind his garage.
“It maybe the pipe is the freeholder of the flats, but I do not know who the freeholders are. It must be costing the people who live there though, with their water meters whizzing round.”
A spokesman for Thames Water maintained the pipe was privately owned, but they were arranging a visit to explain this to Mr Aylott and to help him get it repaired.
She added: “Our policy on customer-side leakage has changed in the last 21 years, as we used to carry out one free repair on private pipes.”