The heat is on for Aylsham mum

Just Regional
Jan 21, 2013 4 mins read

Aylsham single mum Jenny Burrell has been reunited with her daughter in a warm home after a month without heating.

And the 34-year-old has thanked the people of the town for helping see her through the weeks with no heating or hot water in her Compton Road home.

Jenny first contacted Carillion Energy Services on December 21 when her heating started to go wrong. They finally came out to fix it this morning, after Jenny’s plight was featured on the Look East and Radio Norfolk and they were contacted by the BBC.

The working mum of one said: “It’s been down to -15 at times and I’ve had ice in the toilet and dog bowls. My daughter Elisha, nine, had to move out as she was poorly but I had to stay to keep some heat in the house and stop the pipes freezing. I also have dogs and couldn’t leave them.”

She said she was suffering from a chest infection and sinusitis, adding: “No-one should have to live like that. I have been living in one room in the house with an electric blanket and an oil radiator.”

She took her battle to Facebook on Saturday, and was called by Look East who came out with their cameras.

“It has finally been fixed and Elisha can move back in,” said Jenny adding: “People have been very kind offering me the chance of a hot bath and a chance to warm up. I work outside on a farm so what you really need at the end of the day is somewhere warm to come home to and to have a hot bath.” And she thanks everyone who had helped her get through the last month.

Carrillion’s customer experience director James McDonald told Just Aylsham today: “This has clearly been a very difficult time for Jenny and her family. We haven’t got things right on this occasion and we apologise fully to her, and to her friends who have supported her. Her heating is now fixed but it shouldn’t have taken us so long to fix it, and we should have communicated better with her. We are reviewing her case to understand what went wrong so that we can make sure that all our customers get a great service now and in the future.”

Many supported her complaint on Carillion’s Facebook page, where the company also had the chance to defend its actions.

Jenny was tied into to Carrillion for repairs under warranty after taking advantage of a government heating grant to replace her boiler. “I paid my portion of the work to be done and had a new boiler fitted. It was a bit of a breakthrough because as a working single mum with a mortgage I don’t get much help from the government and I seem to shoot myself in the foot as many of my friends don’t work and are far better off because of benefits.”

When the boiler broke down on December 21 she called Carrillion. “I didn’t manage to speak to anyone until the new year,” she said. “They came out and replaced one part but within half an hour it was broken again. They came on the Monday and turned the whole system off saying they’d have a part in three days.”

Two weeks and still no part, so after more unsuccessful calls, Jenny contacted the company through its Facebook page.

Jenny’s concern was increased as her warranty runs out on February 14 and she was worried she would end up having to replace the boiler from her own money.

Jenny and Elisha who were without heating since before Christmas


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