HIGH flat residents have criticised River Clyde Homes for charging them to make a public sign near their homes safe.

Tom Kane, secretary of Rankin Court Tenants' and Residents' Association, said the Marie Curie 'Field of Hope' sign beside the building had become dangerous and he had been trying to find out who is responsible for its upkeep.

He claims that when the association raised their concerns with RCH, owners were forced to fork out to repair it.

Mr Kane, pictured, said: "We informed River Clyde Homes it was a safety hazard and about to topple over and might cause injury to a child.

"Owners were then given a bill of £57.37 to make safe the sign."

Mr Kane claims the approach of RCH to the sign is in stark contrast to their recent maintenance of other areas.

He said: "We resent the fact that they try and justify their support of NHS by mowing the logo on land at Port Glasgow and Roxburgh Street in Greenock but continue to say it is up to owner tenants at Rankin Court to decide the future of what happens to this sign and bill them."

River Clyde Homes told the Telegraph that the land in question is not owned exclusively by them and is 'in shared ownership with the relatively high proportion of owners in the block'.

Their spokesman added: "Approximately 45 per cent of flats are privately owned.

"There are 58 flats in total with 27 privately owned and 31 managed by RCH.

"At a residents’ meeting the issue of the sign was raised and we offered to have a contractor fix it.

"This was done.

"It has been made secure as requested.

"The total bill to make the sign secure was about £57 so each owner’s liability was approximately one pound."

A spokeswoman for Marie Curie says the Field of Hope was organised by the local community and council back in the 1990s in aid of Marie Curie.

The charity said: "We don’t own the sign and whilst we are grateful for the support at the time, we feel it's up to the local community and land owner to agree what they want to do with it."

A council spokesman said: "Marie Curie has told the council that the Field of Hope was created in the 1990s and it would originally have been planted with daffodils.

"Responsibility for the sign would have transferred to RCH when they took over the council’s homes and associated land holdings in 2007.

"The charity told the council that the sign would almost definitely have been paid for by local residents and organised by the local fundraising group at the time, who would have been given permission for it by the council."