Vice Admiral Timothy Lawrence, Chief Executive of Defence Estates recently said he thought he’d made a rod for his own back over his target to reduce vacancy levels in MOD homes from their current incredibly high 17% rate.
So how’s it going? According to this extraordinary story…not well. Amazingly 700 MOD homes have been left empty for five months over a delay in fitting carpets.
To his credit the Vice Admiral describes the fiasco as “totally unacceptable”. But in explanation says rather confusingly “Carpets are a difficult area. There is a risk attached”
He continues: “They were suggesting that we should add a lot of risk factor into the sum; we decided that was not good value for money for the public purse, so we took it out.”So if I understand it right, the carpet fitters were a bit pricey so Defence Estates decided to leave 700 homes empty instead of pay them too much. This ended up costing the tax payer £1.4million in lost rent. Either these were the most expensive carpet fitters in history or the Vice Admiral is right – With decision making like this he really has made a rod for his own back.