Portsmouth City Council
Portsmouth City Council, like many public bodies, own a number of buildings that, over time, become redundant and are then sold to the private sector for refurbishment or redevelopment. At this point, the buildings can become vulnerable to criminal activity such as theft of the valuable metals – copper piping and lead roofing – or more usually, bad weather and general lack of maintenance causing problems such as flooding caused by broken or frozen pipes or fire from electrical shorts. For extended vacant periods, vermin can also cause havoc.
Advance Guarding were instructed by Portsmouth City Council to provide an on site officer to a redundant care home whilst a sale was pending. The Officer was to ensure the integrity of the building by maintaining possession (it is illegal for squatters to enter a disused private dwelling but not illegal to take up residence in a commercial premises!), and to monitor the water, gas and electricity meters to ensure there was no leakage.
The property was kept in unharmed condition and the sale went through without difficulty.