Covid: Manchester estate agent criticised for flyer

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image copyrightJP & Brimelow
image captionJP & Brimelow's leaflet suggests the coronavirus pandemic is a "blessing in disguise"

An estate agent has been branded "vile" by residents for posting leaflets suggesting the coronavirus pandemic is a "blessing in disguise".

JP & Brimelow in Chorlton, Manchester, said the property market had "fared very well".

It apologised and said it had "got it wrong" in the leaflet, which had been "clumsy and ill thought-out".

The leader of Trafford Council said the impact of Covid in the area had been "disproportionately more severe".

Andrew Western said the flyer was "disgusting" when Covid had affected so many people in the area "due to underlying deprivation and long-standing health inequalities".

The leaflet, posted through doors in Chorlton and Old Trafford on Monday, is addressed to "successful people".

It said the pandemic had brought "so much uncertainty, so much worry about jobs and of course concern over health", but "the role our homes play in our lives has increased greatly in importance".

It also said the average price of a detached home in some areas of Greater Manchester had increased 8.4%, which was "very impressive indeed".

image copyrightJP & Brimelow
image captionJP & Brimelow has apologised

Many residents posted the leaflet on social media, calling it "vile", "clumsy" and thoughtless".

One said: "They are trying to capitalise on the deaths of tens of thousands of people, the illness of many, many more and not to mention people who have lost their jobs, or their livelihood.

"Personally I think it is disgusting, soulless behaviour."

In a statement, the estate agent said: "We would like to say a heartfelt sorry to everyone in our community who encountered our latest flyer.

"We got it wrong and for that, we apologise unreservedly.

"We have all lost loved ones due to the pandemic and we acknowledge that the flyer was not representative of the times we are living in."

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