Mum-of-seven, 64, left struggling to breathe in mouldy council flat and forced to chuck out £1,000 clothes due to damp
A MUM-of-seven claims she is struggling to breathe in her mouldy council flat where damp has forced her to chuck out "£1,000 worth of ruined clothes and shoes".
June Williams, 64, has demanded compensation from Swansea Council, as she's fed up with "being fobbed off" and constantly having to wipe down walls with bleach.
She told The Sun Online that she has lived in the three-bedroom brick council home in Pontarddulais, South Wales, for about 12 years.
June, who also has 12 grandchildren, recently had a stroke and is disabled from multiple joint arthritis.
The gran is now on a CPAP breathing machine, used to treat obstructive sleep apnoea.
She said: "There has been a mould issue ever since I first moved in. The kids were always ill when they were living with me.
"I have complained, and asked people to come out, but inspectors say it is just condensation, and I believed them, but I always thought something wasn't right – they were fobbing me off.
"I've got damp issues in my bedroom on both walls, I wipe it down with bleach, but it comes back."
June said that one of her daughters moved in with her temporarily before the pandemic girls and after kept her and kids' clothes folded up in the bedroom, she noticed her clothes were wet and smelt of mould.
"She noticed there was a smell in the wardrobe – there was black mould over the walls, she has thrown out the clothes because they were mouldy," she explained.
The gran said that when she complained to the council about the mould, inspectors who visited told her that it was her fault for not opening windows, rather than being a damp issue.
However she's adamant the property is well-ventilated, but badly built.
Several years ago the council did concede there was "rising damp in the living room, and they treated it.
"It was in the cupboard under the stairs – I have lost family photos, because of the mould," June added.
I've put in a claim for shoes and clothes which were ruined from the mould. I have lost so much – £1,000 worth of clothes and shoes so far.
"I had two plasterers out to replace the cupboards, and they said ‘it’s wet behind here, don’t be surprised if they get mouldy again’," the pensioner claimed.
She's also worried about her breathing issues, claiming "I am sure the mould hasn’t b****y helped".
June said: "I've put in a claim for shoes and clothes which were ruined from the mould. I have lost so much – £1,000 worth of clothes and shoes so far.
"I want the council to pay some compensation for all the s*** I've been through, as I have lost bin bags full of clothes and shoes.
’I'm p***ed off that I have had to throw out bags of clothes and shoes, I tried washing them but they either smelled of mould or you could still see it. I had to bin them.
"I just want some ownership from the council. I am grateful for everything I have – they have put in a new kitchen for me.
"After a while I thought I could smell mould in the cupboard.
"But an inspector told me ‘it was every day use’.
"I said that is bulls***, as I am a bleach freak. Why did nobody detect the damp before?
"I’ve lost money, and I’m on benefits, and I value everything – I am grateful for the council home – but they need to be named and shamed."
The Sun Online has approached Swansea Council for comment.
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