Mel, an English tutor, claims the property owner was ‘fine for the first two days’ after she moved in last December, but then ‘restrictions started raining down’ on her – and things soon turned toxic
Image: Alamy Stock Photo)
A renter claims her landlady subjected her to regular vile tirades and restricted her use of the kitchen throughout the day.
Mel, an English tutor renting in Worcester Park, South London, says things got so bad she had to leave and move into a costly hotel.
She claimed to MyLondon that she was “living in hell” with landlady Sheena Shepherd – who handed her a full-page list of rules she had to follow.
The owner allegedly restricted access to the kitchen as things turned toxic.
Then, after their relationship broke down, she only communicated with her by putting notes under her door and “shouting” at her bedroom window from the garden, the tenant claims.
In a video seen by the publication, the landlady’s friend appears to call the 38-year-old a “delightful c***” and a “peasant” before attempting to snatch the phone from the tenant, prompting the landlady to intervene.
Screenshots also allegedly show the landlady attempting to end Mel’s three-month fixed-term contract early.
Mel says her landlady, who charged her £595 a month to live in the two-storey Victorian house, was “fine for the first two days” after she moved in last December, but then “restrictions started raining down”.
Sheena gave Mel a printed set of rules that restricted her access to the kitchen during the day while she ran PT sessions from home.
Mel claims Sheena also restricted her to “only coming down the stairs once a day” to avoid disturbing her while she worked in the lounge.
She also claims she was banned from having deliveries sent to the house as the doorbell was “too distracting”.
She said the wardrobes in the property were also full of her landlady’s “personal stuff”, leaving her no choice but to store her own belongings in the loft or the shed.
Mel claims that Sheena told her via WhatsApp: “You pay for a ROOM. If you want full access to half, pay half the bills too. When you can pay £1,000 you can have equal say! Have some respect and not be so bloody entitled.”
Responding, Sheena said the printed rules were “part of the lodger license agreement” and that the pair’s personalities “were not a good fit”.
She added: “I agreed to move to the living room so she could have access, but she walked up and down the stairs several times and moved her belongings so I realized it wouldn’t work.”
On December 16, 12 days after she moved in, Mel said her landlady gave her a one-month notice to leave the property.
But on January 5 Mel claims Sheena asked her tenant to stay and apologized for being “feisty”.
Mel said she agreed to stay, on the condition she would have a “trial period” until the end of the month. Sheena claimed the trial period was “conditional on us resolving our differences which we didn’t”.
WhatsApp screenshots seen by MyLondon allegedly show Sheena changed her mind, telling Mel on January 12: “I will give you written notice tomorrow to leave on the 31st of January. I don’t care [about] the contract, I just want you to leave.”
On January 13, Mel was once again served with a notice to leave – this time by February 12.
By that time, Mel claimed that Sheena had blocked her on WhatsApp and was refusing to speak with her in the house, communicating only through notes passed under her door and letters from her solicitor.
Sheena explained: “I used notes to avoid further personal clashes which were very distressing and personal to me during my workday.”
On January 24, Mel received a notice to leave the property at the end of the fixed term (February 28) from Sheena’s solicitor.
Four days later, on the night of January 28, Sheena invited guests to her home. When Mel asked the group to turn down the music they were playing, she claims one of the guests confronted her.
Mel filmed the encounter, threatening to call the police. The video, seen by MyLondon, allegedly shows the friend responding: “For what? You f***ing peasant. What a delightful c*** you are,” before attempting to snatch the camera.
Sheena can allegedly be seen intervening to calm the situation and telling Mel: “Call the police. It’s fine.”
A Met spokesperson said: “Police were called at 11.04pm on Friday, January 28 to reports of a civil dispute at a residential property in Longfellow Road, Worcester Park. Officers attended and gave words of advice. No arrests were made.”