FRUSTRATED retirees say the lack of a footpath outside their apartments is “ridiculous”.

Last September McCarthy and Stone, which built the Fern Court complex, said its designs for the long-awaited footpath along Gower Road, Sketty, had been approved by Swansea Council.

And when residents saw council workmen unload their tools down the road a few weeks ago, they assumed their luck was in.

But it emerged that a new path was being created at the side and rear of a council property.

“It was a kick in the teeth for us,” said Fern Court resident Norman Taylor.

It meant he and his fellow retirees had to continue to leg it across Gower Road to get to the pavement, or walk single file along the Fern Court side of the road while keeping a very close eye on approaching traffic.

Just a couple of minutes’ walk away is Sketty Cross, which has shops, cafes, a pub, pharmacy and bank.

Fern Court was given planning consent in 2015, and the council’s highways department said it did not object as long as a footpath was built from the 45-apartment complex to Sketty Cross before residents moved in.

But this recommendation was not included as a planning condition.

A stumbling block was that a small row of houses between Fern Court and Sketty Cross have front gardens which jut out to the roadside.

The council said last September that it had bought sufficient land from these homeowners to create a path. But a separate legal issue was also cited.

Fern Court residents were given an update at a meeting on May 29.

Mr Taylor said: “We said it was getting ridiculous, from our point of view.

“They should have sorted this out before the (Fern Court) properties were sold.”

The complex was expected to be finished by spring 2017, but completion was delayed.

Mr Taylor said he suggested to the McCarthy and Stone representative at the meeting that it should pay for a flashing speed sign while the footpath issue was being resolved.

In a joint statement, the council and McCarthy and Stone said: “We appreciate how frustrating this wait can be for residents and we’re grateful for their patience.

“We’re working closely to keep them informed and are committed to arranging for the laying of a footpath as soon as we can.

“The safety and security of homeowners living at Fern Court is a priority.”

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