Because justice exists where people have become adjusted to one another, how can the British Government, consisting of millionaires and multi-millionaires, and which by force of arms and against all the rules of democracy imposes its violent will on the small section of the island of Ireland known as Northern Ireland, become adjusted to down-trodden, abused and captive people who are viciously prevented from protecting their moral, legal and human rights even in a Court of so-called English Law?
At the end of November 1976 I made a complaint to my local council, Down District Council, to confirm the existance of smoke nuisance entering my terraced home which I had purchased five months earlier. The smoke nuisance was coming from the coal fire from my neighbour's house next door through the party or dividing wall between our two houses. A short time later my neighbour on the other side of me then complained to me that the coal fire smoke from my fire was entering their home through the dividing or party wall on the other side of my house. These three houses in this block of four houses were at that time less than five years old. My particular house already had two previous owners which I did not find out about until later!
So began the most devious, cruel and corrupt cover-up of arguably the biggest house-building fraud in this so-called United Kingdom, a cover-up inspired, and with malice aforethought, carried on until now - April 2013 - by Officers and Councillors within Down District Council and aided and abetted by civil servants and Central Government personnel both in London and Stormont. Much of the detail of my family's experience of the actual suffering this cover-up has caused us can been read in my other website www.gerryrice.com
By the end of November 2012, 36 years had passed during which time every conceivable avenue that I could think of and address has been contacted and there is no redress available not only to my family but there is no redress available to all the many thousands of families throughout Northern Ireland who have been caught up in this fraud perpetrated by Down District Council's predecessor the East Down Rural District Council just before and at the beginning of The Troubles.
The following is a slightly edited copy of Webpage 2 (or Chapter 2) of my website www.gerryrice.com in which I expose the shocking and deliberate decisions taken unanimously by Down District Councillors especially to gain the support of All the other councils throughout Northern Ireland especially the largest, Belfast City Council, within whose jurisdiction there are an as yet undisclosed serious number of terralux-built houses, both in the private and public (NIHE) housing sectors and which is being totally ignored and covered up by politicians and Government servants despite their illegal and dangerous structures.
Down District Council's reaction to my campaign resulted in serious implications for the whole of Northern Ireland.
Because I had now closed up my own fireplace and had proved that the smoke which was continuing to pollute our home was coming from the fireplace of No. 54, my letter to Down District Council brought the first written reply from Down District Council's Chief Public Health Inspector F. Nixon.
I read this second letter from Mr. Nixon dated April 25th 1977 again in the light of my earlier experience.
The picture being conjured up in my mind was not a very pretty one.
It must be noted that at this time the winter had passed and that DDC had already put in writing to NHBC, two months earlier, that No's 52, 54 & 58 had the same complaint as No. 56 Carlisle Park in this clip of the letter as follows:
So, by the admission in writing of the DISTRICT CHIEF PUBLIC HEALTH INSPECTOR for Down District Council, which is the only authority, according to the British Government, with the power to deal with my house problem in the whole of this United Kingdom, Down District Council , quote, "... cannot take legal action in any such matters just on the hearsay of an individual..." unquote. Fair enough, but at least it was now true that the Council COULD take legal action, quote, "... upon such verification". The "hearsay" which caused me to contact Down District Council yet again which Mr. Nixon referred to was only part of the growing volume of evidence of verification already in Mr. Nixon's possession. The owners of the three other houses in the block had complained as well and either Mr. Nixon or the Council's Clerk/CEO had deemed it prudent to inform the NHBC of this fact, albeit privately! How many other owners in Carlisle Park had also complained - especially the very temporary owners of the house nearby which was sold FIVE TIMES in the 34 months or so that we lived in No. 56. This was why Councillor Carmel O'Boyle felt it necessary to write many years later in the Mourne Observer, quote, "Such a protracted investigation would be enough to drive anyone to distraction, particularly when it should have been obvious that a chimney breast constructed of Terralux blocks would be certain to behave in the way described by Mr. Rice and his family ...".
My letter to Lord Melchett, then Minister of state, was answered by someone whose signature I could not read and who wrote on behalf of a W. Moffett. The letter dated March 23rd 1977 read;
"Dear Mr. Rice,
You wrote on 28 February 1977 about the problem of smoke from your neighbour's fire which comes into your home through the dividing wall. The Department has no power to take action where it is alleged that a house has not been constructed properly. If the defect cannot be remedied under the National House Building Council's protection scheme, then the matter must be resolved between yourself and the builder, and you may wish to take legal advice as to how you should proceed. The Northern Ireland Housing Executive, at its discretion, may pay grants of up to 75% towards the cost of essential repairs to property with a Net Annual Value of £130 or less. If the NAV's of your and your neighbours' houses are within this limit, you may wish to contact the Housing Executive for further information.
For W. Moffat."
Housing Executive officers did call out to my house at my request but they did not keep the second appointment they made!
I wrote to the Sunday Post without success.
Gemma complained yet again to Down District Council on May 3rd 1977 that smoke was entering our house. By this time the winter was well past, but we now had our fireplace closed up and Down District Council's Public Health Department was most likely by now getting a lot of flak from various quarters.
These inspectors now had the authority to cause the owner of No.54 to allow them to carry out a smoke test on the fireplace of No. 54. This was done. In fact, because the Council had admitted, and in writing, that all four houses had the same complaint, a Public Health nuisance actually and legally existed and because of this Down District Council had the power and the duty to test all four houses for smoke nuisance and issue a Statutary Notice for each of all four houses - AND without the owners' consent!. THIS WAS NOT DONE! The test on No. 54 alone which was done entailed closing off the top of the chimney of No.54 and closing off the fireplace opening in No. 54 while letting off a smoke bomb in the fireplace of No. 54. When this was done the gas from the smoke bomb entered our home, No. 56.
This operation was carried out solely by Inspectors from the Public Health Department of Down District Council. One of these Inspectors came into our home and explained to my wife and me that he had given my neighbour, Mr. Toman, ten days within which to carry out the necessary repairs to his fireplace. He also told us that he, a Public Health Inspector, would have to be present while the repairs were being carried out. It seemed to me that, surely, one of his fellow Council Inspectors from Down District Council's Building Control Department should have been present to oversee the building work being done a Public Health Inspector did not have the qualifications for overseeing such construction work.
"... no representative of the Council was given the opportunity of inspecting the work".
The above was a blatant perversion of the course of justice
On the assumption that the necessary remedial work had been done to the fireplace of No. 54 Carlisle Park, Ballynahinch, it is also recorded in the same paragraph of CC 19/78 that on May 23rd 1977 two officers from Down District Council's Public Health Department carried out further tests. Unfortunately the Commissioner failed to report that during this second smoke test, the owner of No. 54, Mr. Toman, a full-time fireman, was given the responsibility of sealing off his own chimney!!!
The District Chief Public Health Inspector wrote the following letter to my wife dated June 15th 1977:
Firstly, I had not reached the stage of complaining about smoke being "emitted", sent out from my house, ie, the smoke which was being sent out from my fireplace into No. 58 Carlisle Park.
Secondly, Paragraph 31 of CC 19/78 states that the nuisance from the fireplace of No. 54 into my home "manifestly existed", yet DDC's professional Public Health inspectors refused to acknowledge its existence during the coldest time of the year when fires were used most, even though that same Council, presumably through the Clerk of DDC or Mr. Nixon, were able to, and did, inform the NHBC in writing early in 1977 that this block of four houses had the same complaint.
Thirdly, the test referred to, which,
(1) Mr. Nixon felt proved that the nuisance had been resolved, and
(2) my neighbour had assisted in carrying out, and
(3) was used by Mr. Nixon to try to cause us to start all over again from scratch was, later that year, to be totally discredited by Mr. Nixon himself.
On Thursday June 23rd 1977 the Down Recorder published its second article on the case with this opening sentence in heavy type;
"A Ballynahinch man has accused health and building authorities of operating a 'cover.up' to disguise a building defect in his home which he says they will not recognise in spite of contrary evidence."
I knew that the journalist, Pamela Gardner, had put the matter in a perfect nutshell. This article recorded the fact that I had just installed a smoke detector, that I believed at that time that the problem was caused by the lack of flue liners in the chimney but that the authorities would not attribute the problem to the lack of flue liners, that the architect had specified flue liners to be built into the chimney of each house in the block but that in 1971 flue liners were not a legal requirement. This article also recorded the fact that an Environmental Department spokesman stated, "Certainly it is our duty to see that nuisances are abated, but first we have to establish that a nuisance exists". The article also recorded the fact that I planned to install oil-fired central heating at a cost of 1100 pounds, and that I believed that I had only the months of July and August to get rid of the smoke problem before the onset of colder weather caused people to light their fires more often and cause more pollution. It also recorded the fact that I was preparing a file for the BBC programme 'That's Life'.
Four months previously I had contacted the Nationwide Building Society about the problem and received the following letter from the assistant branch manager dated February 23rd 1977;
"Dear Mr. Rice, Further to your telephone conversation with me earlier this week I have referred the matter to the Society's surveyor who might wish to call to see the problem for himself. I confirm that this construction fault will not affect the property insurance."
The Building Society's surveyor called on the same day that this letter arrived. In June 1977 I received the Nationwide property insurance renewal notice in which the sum the Nationwide decided that No. 56 had to be insured for was 13,200 pounds and the premium was to be 17.05 pounds. The monthly mortgage payment then was 73.95 pounds.
Little wonder that the Nationwide were able to GUARANTEE Capital earnings!
In July 1977 I received the cheque from the Nationwide Building Society to cover the cost of installing the central heating. Of course it would not have been necessary to install central heating but for the smoke problem so the Nationwide were actually making a sale as it were out of my dilemma and they weren't complaining, not yet they weren't! A local firm of plumbing contractors, Gibney Bros., had the system installed very quickly along with roof space insulation and an indirect hot water supply cistern with an immersion heater. We still kept our fireplace closed up to protect the new owners of No. 58, a very nice quiet elderly couple and their son. We still had to find some way to get our neighbours in No. 54 to give us similar protection.
James Magee had only recently become a co-opted Councillor and was a relative newcomer to our area. Councillor Magee is a brother of Father John Magee who was later to become the Catholic Bishop of Cloyne in the Republic of Ireland. We contacted Councillor Magee and he brought a Public Health Inspector whom I recognised from a previous meeting which I have already mentioned, and a Building Control Officer to meet my wife and me in No. 56 on August 11th 1977.
It is recorded in paragraph 9 of CC 19/78:
"In the note of that meeting made on the following day by one of the Public Health representatives it is recorded that the earlier sequence of events involving the Council had been discussed, that it was pointed out that the Public Health Department while willing to carry out tests on the flues of all four houses in the row could only do so - in the absence of evidence of a public nuisance - with the consent of the occupiers, and it was agreed that the Council be notified if any further smoke nuisance arose at No. 56."
The fact was that the Council was terrified of having to admit that there WAS A PUBLIC NUISANCE because if they were forced to test all the other flues THEY KNEW as the Council had already admitted to the NHBC that all four houses would fail their tests - if they were properly carried out - and a Statutory Notice would have to be issued against all four owners which put the matter on a legal plain and THIS WAS THE VERY LAST THING THAT DOWN DISTRICT COUNCIL WANTED!
I told these three Council officials that their Council was already well aware that the four houses had the same complaint and had put this in writing, therefore there was a Public Health Nuisance.
I said a lot more but it was now obvious that DDC officers and Inspectors and others were going out of their way to find reasons for not doing anything instead of acting on evidence they already had and I told these Officials so. I pointed out that this complaint had been identified and verified in a smoke test carried out exclusively by Council Officials. I pointed out that the subsequent smoke test, not carried out exclusively by Council Officials, was null and void and should not be recognised. I insisted that since a nuisance had been proven and the Council had admitted in writing that the four houses had the same complaint, a Public Health Nuisance did in fact and in practice exist.
In such a situation it was not necessary to have the consent of the other householders to have smoke tests done on all four houses. The meeting broke up in deadlock. Who or what were these people afraid of?
On the morning of August 24th 1977 I rang Councillor Magee to get something done to have our home made safe from what I now believed to be health damaging and toxic fumes coming from next door. Councillor Magee, the District Chief Public Health Inspector and two other Council officials called at No. 56. On no occasion did any of these Council officials bring any scientific monitoring equipment with them. While they were in No. 56 one of these officials said to the rest as they huddled by the opening under the staircase that the smell reminded him of his wartime experiences. The smoke and the smell were so obvious yet in paragraph 10 of CC 19/78, Mr. Nixon is reported as having only detected a "minute trace of smoke which he did not regard as a public health nuisance". It must be borne in mind that my fireplace was still closed up. My neighbour in No. 54 refused to allow the District Chief Public Health Inspector to carry out another smoke test in No. 54. There the matter had to rest. It seemed to me that this state of affairs was being very cleverly managed by Mr. Nixon and his Councillor friends, and as it turned out, for a very good reason.
Our concern for the health and safety of our children grew as the days for the second year grew colder and the fumes and smoke got more persistent. We continued to contact Down District Council. I was especially concerned for Gemma and the baby she was expecting at the end of the year. On September 22nd 1977 the Down Recorder published a report of Down District Council's first public discussion on the case under the large heading,
"ANOTHER BLOW FOR GERRY RICE" .
Down District Councillors voted to accept the report of the District Chief Public Health Inspector that smoke in my home which came from the house next door did not constitute a public nuisance. I was quite shocked at this because Councillor Magee had told me before he left No. 56 that he intended getting the authorities to do something before one of the children was found dead upstairs, yet at the Council meeting he said that he supported Mr. Nixon but was confused about what I could do in my situation.
It must be remembered that Councillors must sanction all Council officers' correspondence so Down District Councillors would have been aware of the contents of the letter sent by the Council officer detailing the fact that all four houses had the same complaint of smoke nuisance.
The minutes of that Council meeting held in the boardroom of the Council Offices at 24 Strangford Road, Downpatrick on Monday 19th September 1977 record that those in attendance were;
The minutes of this meeting record at the ninth item on the agenda, quote;
So, even though Down District Council had already put in writing to the NHBC that the four houses in the block of houses, 52, 54, 56 & 58 Carlisle Park, Ballynahinch had the same complaint of dangerous coal-smoke entering each of the four houses, a fact which all the Councillors should have been aware of since they had to sanction their officer's letter confirming this fact to the NHBC, Down District Councillors accepted without question, Mr. Nixon's recommendation "that no further action be taken at this time". In such circumstances, every Down District Councillor failed in their duty by accepting "without consideration" the recommendations of its Officer, the District Chief Public Health Inspector, "that no further action should be taken at this time" when four families were suffering from coal smoke nuisance and the Council knew the reason why. This was the message given to the Commissioner for Complaints as reported here in;
Paragraph 30 of CC19/78.
The above was a blatant perversion of the course of justice given the following dossier clip.
The above Down District Council chairman's subsequent submission to the Northern Ireland Commissioner for Complaints was anything but honest. ALL the Down District Councillors were present at that Council meeting and accepted without question, Mr. Nixon's report which went unchallenged!
I noted that all the recommendations of Mr. Nixon were unanimously accepted on items 8, 10, 11 & 12 of the Council minutes of their meeting on September 19th 1977. This whole page 5 shows that Down District Councillors always seemed to accept without consideration the recommendations of its District Chief Public Health Inspector and was therefore failing its duty!
Council votes to have (defective) NIHE houses sold.
I found item 7 on the same agenda, which was unanimously carried, most interesting if not bizarre when I read these minutes many years later and with the benefit of much hard earned knowledge.
"That this Council request the Northern Ireland Housing Executive to sell off existing houses to tenants, subject to suitable safeguards or categories found to be appropriate, and that this Council seek the support of all other Councils in the Province and the Association of Local Authorities for this Motion".
Because of Down District Council's knowledge of the cause of my smoke problem already and were keeping quiet about it, and for reasons which will become obvious shortly, Down District Council actually voted to ask all other Councils throughout Northern Ireland to persuade our Public Housing body, the Northern Ireland Housing Executive (NIHE), to sell off their housing stock to their tenants. Such was Down District Council's intimate knowledge of their, now, big housing problem both in the private sector and in the public sector for which Council Building Inspectors also had responsibility, they knew they were now sitting on a veritable 'time-bomb' because of my now obvious determined quest for truth and justice.
Actually this Co. Down Council was more intimately involved in and better equipped than any other Council in Northern Ireland to sound the alarm bells about this housing scandal. This fact will become clear shortly.
Firstly, Down District Council did not relish being left on their own to face all the 'flak' that the success of my campaign, now being anticipated, was bound to cause, and had voted unanimously to gain 'back-up' from their fellow Councils throughout Northern Ireland.
Secondly, Down District Councillors also saw this as a way to alert various other 'official' bodies, especially the legal profession, through all other Councils throughout Northern Ireland of the impending implications should I continue with my mission. This must be bourne in mind as you read about the ongoing information, the crazy decisions and the lies that have been told by the most surprising people.
Just as Down District Council was causing householders within their own Down District who had purchased defective houses like mine to sell on their defective houses to the next unsuspecting purchaser by refusing to help them out of their dilemma, they most likely would have pointed out that the 'best way' to deal with the problem if it came to another Council's attention was simply to ignore the problem altogether just as Down District Council had been doing with me and getting away with it - so far!
As well as that, you will see how Down District Council 'handled' the legal profession and most likely passed on their 'experience' in that sphere too!
The Northern Ireland Housing Executive were almost immediately, throughout Northern Ireland, to embark on a programme of offering their housing stock, including their own dangerously defective houses, to sitting tenants at a fraction of the cost of a proper house. In this way the NIHE would be 'deflecting' their responsibility from themselves just as the former owners of No. 56 'deflected' their responsibility on to me - "buyer beware" - as this crazy legal term laments.
I will never know for sure how much my campaign was responsible for the above-mentioned Notice of Motion. Given the magnitude of the housing scandal which was to emerge both in the private sector which included the Carlisle Park development and in the public sector housing which was for the most part, controlled by the Northern Ireland Housing Executive, and the response or rather lack of response of Council officials to my requests for statutory protection, I have to say that I do believe my campaign already played a big part in that Notice of Motion - a Notice of Motion which would have had to get the 'clearance', at least, of the SDLP Chief Whip!
The following Minute 24/20 is recorded in the Minutes of Down District Council's Meeting on Monday 7th November 1977:
Whatever Down District Councillors told all the other Councils throughout Northern Ireland about the "great danger" they were in because the terralux blocks whistle had been blown, the Northern Ireland Housing Executive must have had no need of laxatives. In no time at all, here below is the first of a regular results process of Down District Council's 'inspired' Motion at their Council Meeting on September 19th 1977 - a Motion seemingly prepared by a member of the SDLP!
"A major extension to the Northern Ireland Housing Executive's house sales policy meant 3,900 homes in the North Down area were available for sale to their tenants. Previously, houses were only offered for sale in areas where housing need had been met".
North Down is one of Down District's 'sister' Council areas whose Council is one of the South-East region's District Councils whose Regional Headquarters is at Down District Council.
Mr. Bowman's perspicuous discernment, however, raises most important and serious questions;
1. Northern Ireland Housing Executive's new house sales policy was being 'extended' to sitting tenants as a direct result of the decision of Down District Councillors to share their knowledge of a series of most disturbing substantive offences with all other Councils throughout Northern Ireland.
2. Northern Ireland Housing Executive's new house sales policy was being 'extended' to sitting tenants in areas where the need for social housing had not been met. This was a very worrying change of policy for working class families who were unable to afford a mortgage and therefore depended on the NIHE for their ability to rent them the homes for which the NIHE were responsible.
3. The panic was such that by July 26th 1984,
"The majority of the 21,000 sales completed to date have progressed smoothly" according to Mr. Chris Patten MP in reply to a Parliamentary Question by Mr. James Molyneaux MP who had asked,
"what progress has been made in the provision of sound title for Housing Executive properties available for sale to tenants." Despite there being well over 150 problems with title in the NIHE house sales to their former tenants, Mr. Patten stated, re Hansard, that at that time, 1984, the NIHE was managing to complete 100 such house sales per week.
I call Mr. McGrady's speech 'incredible' for different reasons.
The level of unfit housing in the area Mr. McGrady was referring to, ie Down District, was most certainly NOT the houses built with Terralux blocks. So there must be even more unfit housing problems in addition to the massive Terralux-built housing problem within Down District that I am still unaware of! This was in a Government-sponsored body, the NIHE!
As can be seen above, according to Mr. McGrady,
"..... the Executive has been forced to prioritise within its activities at the expense of housing need".
This statement was made six days short of twelve years after Mr. McGrady and all his fellow Down District Councillors unanimously agreed, quote,
"That this Council request the Northern Ireland Housing Executive to sell off existing houses to tenants, subject to suitable safeguards or categories found to be appropriate, and that this Council seek the support of all other Councils in the Province and the Association of Local Authorities for this Motion".
Surely Mr. McGrady could not have forgotten that the actions of his fellow Down District Councillors themselves, twelve years earlier, on such an important issue even involving the 'Province wide' Association of Local Authorities, was done at the expense, and drastic expense, of housing need for the poorest families within Northern Ireland and in practice were responsible for the wiping out of so much of the missing social housing we have been listening to politicians here lamenting about in the years since, just as Mr. McGrady in effect was bemoaning in his above speech as if the Housing Executive, in this particular instance, were mainly to blame?
Surely, especially as a professional accountant, Mr. McGrady, who, along with his fellow Councillors took that decision twelve years earlier resulting in the sale of many, many thousands of NIHE houses to former tenants, even, and especially, when housing need had not been met, must have been aware that it would also result in much higher rents for the already least well-off in Northern Ireland, as NIHE Chairman Mr. Ferguson actually referred to. What an unmitigated disaster for so many of the poorest families - now compounded by the Terralux problem!
In the meantime, compare the above inaction in my case with the action taken by the same Mr. Nixon and the same Councillors at the same meeting, September 19th 1977 in regard to a much less dangerous smoke nuisance at Item 13 on the same agenda. The minutes read, quote;
"ALLEGED PUBLIC HEALTH NUISANCE - LISBANE ROAD, SAINTFIELD.
The Clerk submitted for consideration a petition from residents of Lisbane Road, Saintfield received from a councillor, complaining about the operation of a dumping ground at Lisbane Road which, as will be seen later, consisted of "uncontrolled dumping and burning of material". He further reported that he had referred the petition to the District Chief Public Health Inspector and to the Planning Service.
My complaint had been in Down District Council's books for nearly ten months and as you see from the above meeting, twenty Councillors approved the Council's Chief Public Health Inspector's recommendation that "... no further action be taken at this time."
One Councillor brought a petition to that same meeting and Bingo! Mr. Nixon immediately recommended the issuing of a Statutory Notice. In addition to this Statutory Notice Mr. Nixon also recommended that, "... the Planning Department be instructed to enforce conditions imposed under the Planning Order." So why was there such a cataclysmic difference in these two decisions? One complaint involved the slow suffocution of two adults and ten defenceless children by their being expected to breathe-in undiluted coal-smoke in an enclosed area which my local Council refused to act upon and the other, a nuisance of "uncontrolled dumping and burning of material", smoke which was diluted and blown away out in the open air, and this same Council slapped a Statutory Notice on it without hesitation. Why did not one of the twenty Councillors feel it necessary to state, "Now hold on a cotton-pickin' minute, what about that other smoke nuisance involving the family in Carlisle Park that we have just put off?" Not a single word. Not even from one of the twenty Councillors especially Councillor Eddie McGrady the SDLP Chief Whip and SDLP spokesman on Housing, the leader of the SDLP team on Down District Council, a man renowned for complaining, and rightly so, for the pollution of the Irish Sea by nuclear waste from Sellafield and a man already working on his personal political advancement which would soon see him replace Enoch Powell as British Member Of Parliament for South Down!
That the Planning Department also be instructed to enforce conditions imposed under the Planning Order was providing additional back-up to enforce an open-air nuisance abatement gave even greater imbalance to this Council's disgusting conduct.
A local nurse, who had worked alongside the previous owners of No. 56, told us that they were "...tortured with smoke".
I can assume, with some certainty, that they too had approached Down District Council for help and like us did not get it. So, like the other owners of these defective houses they too sold up. This was very wrong!
That the Council were very well aware of the problem was made clear by their writing to the NHBC. The Councillors must have questioned their professional officers as to the cause of the problem. This would not have been done in open Council meetings in the presence of the press. Several officers previously employed by the former East Down Rural District Council and present during those Down District Council meetings I have identified, especially in the latter part of 1977, must have already known the cause of the problem.
It was now almost a year since I had 'blown my whistle'. Given the press coverage and now after a debate of some kind in a full Council meeting, they had had enough time to come to some conclusion. The former EDRDC's Building Control Department was responsible, and highly paid, for ensuring that the structures of all houses, both public and private sectors, were built to the high standards contained in statutory law. The Chief Building Control Officer at Down District Council Headquarters was, at this time, not only the Chief Building Control Officer for the District of Down, but he was also the Chief Building Control Officer over the five District Councils in the South Eastern Group of District Councils which includes Down District. The headquarters of this South-Eastern Group was at DOWN DISTRICT COUNCIL!
It was this same man who, in the company of the site foreman employed by the building contractor, personally asked me to allow the building contractor of the new NIHE estate across the A24 road from No. 11 to dump clay from the excavations of the new NIHE building site on my boggy land a few years earlier. If I remember correctly I believe that this request about the dumping of excavated clay was made about 1971 or 1972.
This NIHE building site in the village of Drumaness, comprises Mullamore Drive, Cushowen Place and Shanvalley Way, with Lynnhurst Park built in the early 1960s, all comprise 94 houses and have all their load-bearing structures built with the rubbish called terralux blocks - contrary to the Building Law at that time!
I told the press of my intention to protest at the total neglect of duty of the political parties as represented on Down District Council. My protest was to take place at the following General Election. I was determined to be a candidate in the Parliamentary Constituency of South Down. Quite simply I felt that I had let me down. I was not going to let them forget about it.