Makeover man and DIY SOS tradesmen are on the case to help transform Francesse’s home before Christmas

Francesse Graham in her wrecked kitchen

Francesse Graham in her wrecked kitchen - Credit: Archant

A task force of good hearted tradesmen are racing to repair retried midwife Francesse Graham’s house after an appeal for help in the Comet.

Shane Johnson, left, and Cliff Lee

Shane Johnson, left, and Cliff Lee - Credit: Archant

Francesse who served the NHS as a midwife for 45 years and lives in Sefton Way, Stevenage, was devastated after a flood filled her kitchen and dining room with sewage and she spent six months in a hotel as she struggled to resolve claims with an insurance company.

Now Stevenage’s makeover hero Shane Johnson and his team of tradesmen – some of whom have appeared in BBC TV’s DIY SOS programme – are on the scene.

The team who have previously overhauled homes and gardens for families with medical needs, including for Stevenage’s Logan Keir who was born with a rare immune disorder, are busy fitting a new kitchen, fixing piping and gas work, laying new flooring and decorating.

They hope to be finished in time for Christmas so Francesse can return her home.

Cos Kyriacou

Cos Kyriacou - Credit: Archant


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Shane told the Comet today: “I think we’ll get it done. The most difficult thing is getting people here when we need them as most people are finishing work next Wednesday.

“They’ve all been great so far. Once you’ve found that group of people who are willing to do it it’s fine.”

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Also on the tools are Stevenage tradesman Cliffe Lee and decorator Pete Dawson who both recently took part in the filming of an episode of DIY SOS in Welwyn Garden City when the television task force transformed the home of a family with serious medical and health needs.

Cliffe said: “It was absolutely fantastic. It was the best nine days of my life and it really does change the way you look at things.

Mark Strong

Mark Strong - Credit: Archant

“Francesse has been out of her home for six months and I will do anything I can to help her get back in.”

Peter said the experience changed his life to the extent he has been doing a lot of jobs free of charge for people in need since the filming.

Also on the team are Mark Strong who is handling the flooring and Welwyn based Cos Kyriacou who owns Fig Tree Property Services and is handling the plumbing.

See how Shane’s team helped transform Logan Keir’s house and garden here:

Can you help?

The team are now appealing for a company to offer carpet for Francesse’s hall stairs and landing and if possible a carpet fitter.

They would also like someone to come forward to fit disability furniture as Francesse has trouble with mobility.

If you can help, call Shane on 07507 671926

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