‘We’re being let down over lift’

Airbles Tower residents Margaret Grier, left, and Vicky Turner
Airbles Tower residents Margaret Grier, left, and Vicky Turner

Frail and elderly residents claim they’re trapped in a Motherwell tower block because a lift has been out of action for weeks.

They say that while fire safety measures have been improved after the tragedy in London earlier this year, they shouldn’t have to wait so long for what they describe as a lifeline service to be restored.

Residents say the lift for even-number floors in Airbles Tower has been broken for three weeks, having worked only intermittently for three weeks before that.

Stroke victim Margaret Grier (76) said she was practically housebound on the 14th floor for 10 days until relatives carried her heavy mobility scooter down to the 13th floor. She struggles to walk down even one flight of stairs.

Margaret said: “I get out for my shopping, but I don’t use the laundry room just now.

“After Grenfell, the council has gone to the extent of taking away our doormats because they are seen as a fire risk but what about the lift?”

Her daughter Leeanne Slavin added: “There are many elderly people in this tower and they are having to struggle either up or down to the odd floors to get in and out.

“I would think, with the Grenfell disaster not long ago, there would be more urgency in getting this fixed. I know my mother will never get out of the building if there’s an emergency and I’m sure there are many in the same boat.”

Vicky Turner, also 76 and a 14th floor resident, added: “I’ve also had a stroke and find it very difficult to use the stairs. It’s very inconvenient.”

Alison Clarke, the council’s area manager, warned it could be another four weeks before the lift is repaired.

She said: “A major lift refurbishment is being carried out. We appreciate that this causes inconvenience but this replacement is necessary.

“The works are on schedule and are due to be completed by mid-September.”