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Landlords ordered to pay over £17,000 for a catalogue of failings

Lawford Cunningham, from Wheeleys Road, Birmingham and his grandson Morgan Cunningham-Blackwood, from Stanmore Road, Birmingham both pleaded guilty at Cardiff Magistrates Court last week.

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The guilty pleas related to a string of offences relating to a property that they rented out in Clive Street in Grangetown.

The case came to light when a tenant made a complaint about the conditions in 107 Clive Street. A visit was carried out by housing enforcement officers on February 14ththis year and the layout of the converted property was deemed so bad that Prohibition Orders had to be served.


The Victorian terraced property had been converted into four self-contained flats and two bedsits, each with its own kitchen but with a shared bathroom.

The assessment showed that the property didn’t have an appropriate fire alarm system; didn’t have enough electrical sockets in each flat; had insufficient small kitchens which were deemed as unsafe, broken water heaters; loose tiles in the shared bathroom; a leaking roof and the landlords were unable to provide gas, electrical or fire alarm certificates showing that they had been properly inspected and serviced.

The officers were so concerned about the conditions that were found, four of the flats were served with Prohibition Orders. Since then three of the Prohibition Orders have been revoked, as the living accommodation has been brought up to the required standard.

Cllr Lynda Thorne, Cabinet Member for Housing and Communities, said:

“If any resident living in a private rented house has concerns about the property that they live in, we ask that they contact the council so that an assessment can take place.

“The majority of private sector landlords provide a good service for their residents and play an invaluable role in Cardiff’s housing stock.

“A small number of landlordsthink they can provide housing to an inadequate standard, which puts their tenants at risk need to think again.

“In many cases, we are able to work with the landlord to try to resolve the issues, but if a property is found in a condition like this case, we have no other option that to prosecute through the courts.”

Both landlords were fined £8,500 each, ordered to pay £200 each in costs and a £100 victim surcharge each.

The offences related to breaches of the Housing Act 2004. Notably Section 72, Operating a Licensable House in Multiple Occupation without a Licence and Section 234, Failure to comply with the Licensing and Management of Houses in Multiple Occupation (Additional Provisions) (Wales) Regulation 2007.