By Appointment

Firstly the good news – my half-a-job has resumed again. So although I am still seriously looking for something else (this temporary one is not really enough hours), I am off the dole. Which is very good news.

Last week, I turned my two storage heaters on, as I needed some background heat in the flat. Nothing happened. I have been here ten years and the heaters have worked perfectly every year until now, so I can’t really believe they’ve both suddenly popped their clogs at the same time. There seems no obvious sign of malfunction, no switches tripped on the consumer unit, they just don’t work.

After giving them a couple of nights’ trial at various settings, just in case, I called the housing association’s repair line on Thursday and booked an appointment for for the electrician to come and look at them this morning, Monday 19th. I even got a letter confirming the appointment.

This morning comes. I make sure I’m up and dresed in good time. I wait – but no electricians appear. At eleven, I rang the repair line because I needed to leave at twelve to get to work.

“Oh,” says the lady on the customer service desk, “They rescheduled the appointment for Friday last week, and they called but couldn’t gain admittance.”

“I was at work on Friday. The appointment was was for this morning, it’s on the letter. Nobody contacted me to tell me it was being changed.”

“Yes, but they rescheduled the appointment without telling you.”

Er, now isn’t it the very nature of an appointment that it is a time agreed by both of the parties involved? Apparently not in the eyes of the housing association and their tame repair company. I think what they did was just call here on Friday on the offchance – fair enough if they were working in the area – but to then cancel the original, scheduled appointment (and not even tell me about it)… It’s a little thick!

The upshot is that I still have no heat in my storage heaters. We have made another appointment forthem to call tomorrow afternoon. I hope they keep this one.

And if they don’t turn up, the Estate Manager for the flats is coming to see me on Thursday morning (about another matter altogether), and will be asked, very firmely, to Do Something.

Provided, of course, that she also turns up when expected!

Update, 20th Oct:

The electrician turned up — two hours before the scheduled time, but I was at home. The fault is not the heaters, which are in perfect working order. It’s the timer in the electricity meter, he says, and that isn’t something he’s allowed to touch. (The electricity meter is only a couple of years old.) Next: a phonecall to npower… They will come to sort it out on Monday the 2nd of November. The earliest they can do. Brrrrr!

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