Hope the owner of a dilapidated retirement home will return – Brinkwire

By George Block for The Otago Daily Times

The overseas owner of a dilapidated and fire-damaged rest home is expected to return to Dunedin, amid public security.

The Glamis hospital, abandoned since 2011, has been stripped of two suspect fires, at the end of last year and again earlier this month.

On 17 August, the day of the second suspect fire, a boy from the Montpellier St building was caught, a spokesman for the police said.

However, no arrests were made with regard to both eruptions and investigations were still ongoing.

Local residents said they were fed up with young people who were walking around the building late at night.

The building was a hotspot for vandalism in Mornington.

It is understood that the owner, Leng Seak Loke, lives in Malaysia, is in bad health and no longer responds to questions from neighbors.

A local councilor from Dunedin said the Construction Services team had contact with the hospital owner, "who has indicated that he is making an appointment to return to Dunedin."

The council did not intend to take legal action because the building was not occupied.

The Chief Advisor to Neil McLeod, Chief Adviser of Construction Services, said that they had contacted the owner last November, that there was a fire, that there was "public safety concerns" and that the building had been barricaded.

"We contacted the owner again last week to inform them about the second fire and try to understand their intentions for the building."

All residents and employees of the Glamis site were transferred to the Yvette Williams Retirement Village in Highgate in early 2011.

– This story was first published in the Otago Daily Times

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