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Basingstoke pensioner charged garage rent for 53 weeks this year
A BASINGSTOKE pensioner has been left fuming after a housing association said that it will charge him rent for 53 weeks this year.
Ken Holland, 67, pays a weekly rent of £19.40 for two blue Sovereign housing association garages in Gainsborough Road, and neighbouring Landseer Road in Black Dam.
He said that “as a point of principle” he will not pay for the 53rd week and called the bill unfair.
In a statement, Sovereign said that Mr Holland’s contract requires him to pay every Monday – and in the 2013-14 financial year there are 53 Mondays.
“Mr Holland is charged a weekly rent on his garages,” Sovereign said in a statement.
“Once every five or six years, there are 53 Mondays in a year.
“In most years, we only charge rent for 364 days a year, and this additional week accounts for the days that he has not been charged in the previous years.”
However, speaking to The Gazette, Mr Holland, a retired lorry driver, who lives in Grove Road, said: “As far as I am concerned I am going to pay them for 52 weeks. It is a point of principle for me.
“If it was a house, that say was £150 per week, some people would struggle to pay it. It is not a question of the money. It is a question of the principle.”
The father-of-four added: “When I lived in Gainsborough Road with young children it was a struggle.
“It was tough bringing up a new a young family and to spring something that you have not budgeted for is just stupid.”