Residents of King’s Park Retirement Village clash with grass cutting

Bosses at a retirement village have hit back at claims they were seeking to take advantage of their elderly residents in a dispute over grass-cutting arrangements.

Residents of King’s Park Village in Canvey have been informed that Cove Communities, the company that runs the retirement village, will no longer be cutting the grass in residents’ gardens from October 31.

Bosses say half the residents already maintain the grass on their plot themselves, with management paying contractors to cut the communal grass.

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They claim these contractors wrongly cut some residents’ grass “without payment”, adding that “it cost a significant sum at a time of enormous inflationary pressure on the park”.

Village bosses claim they should have cut every patch of grass ‘which would have increased the overall fee’ or told residents they were responsible for their own grass ‘as per the agreement they have voluntarily concluded”.

One resident, who did not wish to be named, says he does not have the physical capacity to cut his own plot and fears he will be saddled with the bill amid the cost of living crisis.

He said: “We are struggling to pay our bills as they are and now we have this kick in the teeth.

“A lot of people here are on benefits and with soaring prices for food, electricity and gas.

“Because of this extra expense, some of us may have to go without heating or food so that the business can make more profit.”

A spokesperson for King’s Park Village said: “We totally refute any suggestion that the park is seeking to take advantage of new grass cutting arrangements. The plot agreements between each resident and the park make it clear that the Residents are responsible for maintenance such as mowing the grass on their own plots.

“From spring next year, residents can choose to maintain their own pitch themselves, hire the existing contractor at a cost of £3.75 a week or hire their own independent contractor to maintain their pitch. . If a resident needs to discuss this matter with us, we will be happy to do so in the weeks and months ahead.

“We believe we continue to demonstrate how much we value the welfare and well-being of park owners.”

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