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Complainant Name:
Mr TR and Mrs FM Roberts

Clauses Noted: 1

Publication: Banbury Guardian

Complaint:

Mr TR and Mrs FM Roberts complained to the Press Complaints Commission that the newspaper had inaccurately suggested that a shower in their home was responsible for a damp problem in a neighbouring house.

Resolution:

The complaint was resolved when the PCC negotiated the following clarification and apology:

Damp issues not related to shower

In the October 15, 2009 edition of the Banbury Guardian, we published a story headlined ‘Family furious over lost possessions'.

The article claimed that a leak from a neighbour's shower had cost a family in School View, Banbury, thousands of pounds in lost possessions due to resulting damp problems. The problem was reported to Charter Community Housing in January 2009, with work not getting under way until July 2009.

At the time the article was published, we quoted Charter Community Housing as saying: "Works required to repair the neighbour's shower have been completed and we are satisfied that all parties involved have taken every step necessary to rectify the problem."

Furthermore, a statement from Cherwell District Council released to the Banbury Guardian at the time of the article stated: "The council inspected the property in relation to the complaint, as it has a statutory obligation to do.

"We didn't fix or change the shower but advised the owner that it needed to be fixed and they have now done this."

We have since been asked by the residents of the neighbouring home - Mr TR and Mrs FM Roberts - to point out that Cherwell District Council has since confirmed that it did not conclude that the shower was the cause of all the dampness affecting the neighbouring property, that any defect with the shower was remedied, and that any further damp problems at the neighbouring property were not associated with the Roberts' shower.

At no time did we attempt to contact Mr and Mrs Roberts for a statement. The article in no way intended to imply any wrong doing on the part of Mr and Mrs Roberts, and we are happy to clarify the position.

Date Published: 03/06/2010



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