Kent

Property tycoon wife Judith Wilson fined for heating repair failure

Judith & Fergus Wilson
Image caption Judith and Fergus Wilson own hundreds of properties in Ashford and Maidstone

A buy-to-let landlady has been fined £10,000 for failing to repair the heating system of a disabled tenant.

Judith Wilson, 68, owns hundreds of properties in Ashford and Maidstone with her well-known property tycoon husband, Fergus.

She was found guilty last month of failing to comply with an enforcement notice issued by Ashford council.

Her former tenant Mark Manser said the way he and his wife Sarah was treated had been "disgusting".

Mrs Wilson, from Boughton Monchelsea, near Maidstone, was also ordered by Folkestone magistrates to pay almost £15,000 in legal costs.

Mrs Manser said the couple had no hot water or heating for five months at their home in Ashford. Water was also leaking from the ceiling.

"When our ceiling collapsed they [the Wilsons] didn't want to know, didn't want to fix it.

"We got an eviction notice within two days, that was this time last year. We've been with them nine years, paid our rent on time," she said.

Image caption Mark Manser and his wife had no hot water or heating for five months

Mr Manser, who uses a wheelchair, said: "I got in touch with Mr Wilson, told him what had happened, told him what the problem was, and he didn't want to know.

"It could have cost him 50p, and it's cost him all this amount of money."

Speaking outside court, Mr Wilson said the reason the heating system had not been repaired was because he and his wife had felt intimidated.

However, Judge Justin Barron said the couple had "stubbornly refused to make any genuine commitment to the council to get the work carried out".

Mr Wilson, 70, said his wife would appeal against her conviction, and added that they would be selling their property portfolio.

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