Cowboy builder who wrecked mother-of-two's house put behind bars
A cowboy builder who wrecked a mother of two’s house – and life – was starting a seven month jail sentence today.
Andrew Tedstill was paid £29,000 by Affy Paul to build an extension to her Bryan Road, Penn home and landscape the garden.
But the 40-year-old former soldier became ‘belligerent and bullying’ and walked off the job four months later in April 2016 having completed work worth just £5,000 and done it so badly it cost £20,000 to put it right.
Recently divorced Ms Paul and her teenage children were left without heating for 18 months in a house in danger of collapse and a garden that looked like a tip, Wolverhampton Crown Court heard.
She re-mortgaged the property to fund the repairs which started in August last year and have still not been completed with the roof and garden still to be attended to.
“When he abandoned the job, he left the occupants at risk of serious personal injury,” said Mr Ben Mills, prosecuting.
Wolverhampton Trading Standards launched a prosecution and Tedstill, from Green Oak Road, Codsall, told officials he would ‘see them in court’.
Mr Mark Jackson, defending, maintained: “The promises he made turned out to be false but were initially genuine.
"He was incapable of managing a job that was too big for him and has not made money from this.
"He did not arrive at Ms Paul’s home as a rogue builder but he left as one, with his reputation in tatters."
Tedstill, who has since given up his building business and was working as a bricklayer, admitted unfair trading by recklessly breaching professional diligence between December 2 2015 and April 7 2016.
Judge Michael Challinor told him: “You were belligerent and bullying and Ms Paul felt she had little choice but to placate you.
"She suffered significant psychological harm as a result.”
Ms Paul, now launching civil proceedings, said after the case: “I am really happy with the outcome.
"He has been made an example of and so cannot do this to anybody else.”
Lee Jenks, Senior Trading Standards Officer at Wolverhampton council said: "I’m pleased justice has been served today, cowboy builders cause a huge amount of stress to the victims who have worked hard and saved to pay for improvements to their home only to be badly let down.
“It’s vital that we bring cases like this to the public’s attention – to ensure they avoid becoming victims of reckless cowboy builders.
“As a council, we have a duty to protect consumers from rogue traders who break the law and carry out sub-standard work and will continue to work to bring rogue traders to justice.”