A MAN who has been waiting for a year for his fence to be repaired has had his dream fulfilled after the Oxford Mail stepped in to help.

Martin Lovegrove, 73, of Aldebarton Drive, is an Oxford City Council tenant.

Last year, the council’s building and maintenance company replaced the fence running down his garden.

But the dividing barricade was not quite put back in the same way as before, and Mr Lovegrove said it was ‘misaligned’.

He called the city council last year asking it to help him sort out the fence, and a member of staff came out and confirmed it needed to be fixed.

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But since then, every time Mr Lovegrove has called the council for help he said he has been told that he was ‘on the list’ of maintenance works.

He said: “I just kept getting fobbed off by the council and I was getting a bit fed up of it.”

Mr Lovegrove, who is a former Oxford Mail paper boy, added: “I can understand that they have been focussed on the pandemic but it would be nice if I could just get a definitive answer from the council as to when they are going to get our fence put right.”

Oxford Mail:

Martin Lovegrove. Picture: Ed Nix

After the Oxford Mail intervened, the city council called Mr Lovegrove and offered to visit him over the weekend, with the intention of repairing his fence today.

In reaction to the news from Oxford City Council, Mr Lovegrove said he was happy to have been given a definite answer.

He added: “I was quite surprised when I got the call.”

During the pandemic, Oxford City Council has had to focus a lot of its efforts and staff on helping vulnerable people, the homeless and elderly people who live alone.

As a result a lot of its regular works have been delayed.

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A city council spokesman said: “We understand Mr Lovegrove’s frustration and hope he can understand we had to stop most jobs during the lockdown to prioritise essential services across the board.

“In addition to that, we had to re-assess how we could best protect staff and tenants with new procedures in line with the government’s guidance.

“Although we want to get back to ‘normal’ as quickly as possible we still have reduced staff numbers due to furlough and other health reasons and our suppliers have also been affected.

“We are now planning and scheduling the backlog of work and as quickly as we possibly can. Mr Lovegrove’s fence is on our list and our team has already been in touch with him to fix a date.”