Residential Caretaker (Council)

Visit: https://www.barnet.gov.uk/citizen-home for more information

Title: Residential Caretaker Dates Employed: Dec 2001 – Dec 2005

Estates Location: Muswell Hill, London, N10
Starting as a residential caretaker, I was a lone worker on four estates that have sixteen entrances. It was the role of the caretaker to clean the entrances and to maintain a high level of health and safety. Working with my residents, it was essential that I was able to prioritise my workload to meet the demands.
The demands of the service would be affected by the following situations;
  • Seasonal changes
  • Bank holidays
  • Training
  • Meetings
  • Contractors
  • Repairs in progress
  • Moving into a new home
  • Covering another site for a caretaker on leave

Working from Monday to Friday, I would litter pick the estates to check for any health and safety matters and to access the demands for that week. The above situations needed to be placed on my workload for this week. Covering other patches did not require a full service, however, the health and safety had to be at the highest level.

During the seasonal changes, my full attention would be needed on the outsides as well as the internal. To meet these changes, I would create a plan of action, as shown below;

Summer and warm periods of the year

It was my plan to focus more on the internal areas of the year to help increase the feeling of being proud to live in this area. To achieve this level of satisfaction, I would polish the blocks from top to bottom. This was performed by using the stripping chemicals to remove all the stubborn stains and to give a better, clean floor for the polish.

As gritting during the winter problems can cause damage the flooring, it was essential that I removed all traces of the salt on the flooring. Using stripping for two weeks would solve this issue, with the use of the buffering/polish machine to give the very best result. Polish was then applied to the flooring with a minimum of three coats to give the flooring a new and fresh look.

This polish would remain until around September/October with a fresh coat being applied only once in between to help give it that better look.

Winter and colder periods times of the year

The demands of the service required me to give more attention towards the outside of the estates. For the times when it snowed, gritting the entrances to the blocks, hills to car parks and pathways to the bin areas had to be performed. Mother nature also caused issues with leaves falling to the floor.

There were two methods of solving this issue that worked very well for each estate. The first method was the use of a hako flipper and the send was a blowing machine.  The flipper was a great tool for the outside as it acts like a bigger sweeping brush. The blower helped place the leaves and other items into a corner, however, this would also blow a lot onto the grass.

Reason for leaving: Barnet Council had transferred the housing department to an ALMO (Arms Length Management Organisation) called Barnet Homes.

Experience

This is a hako flipper and was an excellent item to collect the leaves and any other items found on the floor. It acted as a dustpan and brush.

This was the type of blower that we used during the time under the London Borough of Barnet.

Chemicals used and experienced

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