Pregnant mum, 22, forced to sleep in living room of mould-infested flat

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Abigail Davies, 22, who is 22 weeks pregnant, says she is becoming increasingly concerned about her young family’s health due to the damp in two bedrooms of her flat in Bentilee, Stoke-on-Trent

Pregnant Abigail Davies, 22, says
Pregnant Abigail Davies, 22, says “wouldn’t even allow a dog” to sleep in ‘two bedrooms of her flat in Stoke-on-Trent

A pregnant mum claims “rampant” mould in her flat is making her young family ill.

Abigail Davies, 22, is demanding her family be moved from their ‘damp-ridden flat’ in Bentilee, Stoke-on-Trent.

Abigail – who pays £305.68-a-month to live in the property – says there is damp in both bedrooms and she fears there may be asbestos is in the hallway.

The young family moved in two years ago, and claim to have contacted Epic Housing daily for the past three months.

But, instead of tackling the damp, she claims they just paint over it.

Abigail – who is 22 weeks pregnant – says the bedrooms aren’t fit for a dog to sleep in.

Epic insists the property is “fit for habitation” and while Abigail and the young family wait to be moved to a house, there are others more in need.

Abigail says she’s had to chuck out furniture and baby clothes due to the mould

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She said: “My partner has just been diagnosed with asthma, I’m also asthmatic and I have been struggling with asthma attacks.

“I’m in and out of hospital with my son as he has got chest infections constantly. I’ve also had complications with my pregnancy and I’m scared I’m going to have an asthma attack every day.

“Me, my son and my partner are all cramped in the living room. Me and my partner are on the sofa and my son is on a mattress.

“The living room and kitchen are the only places where we can live because the bedrooms are not safe. I was also told that there could be asbestos in the hallway.

“My son can’t get to sleep until 11pm and is waking up at 3am. I’m trying to get him into a routine, but it just seems impossible.

Abigail has moved the family to sleep in the living room

“My back is killing me from sleeping on the sofa, it’s horrendous.

“I’ve been complaining for more than a year and I’ve called them every day for the last three months.

“They just brush it off, but it’s ok for them as they get to go home to their cushy houses.

“They’ve done nothing apart from splashing some paint on it. They’ve repainted the walls four times in the last three months.

“A few months ago they also put glass on the walls to try and stop the mould coming through, but that didn’t help either.”

Abigail says she has spent at least £200 on mould remover and has been forced to throw away £4,000 worth of new baby clothes, a pushchair and furniture that has been destroyed by mould.

Abigail says the housing situation is taking its toll on her meental health, and that she’s been staying with friends and family “to get away from it”.

“I want Epic to fix the problems and move me. I wouldn’t wish this on my worst enemy,” she adds.

Epic Housing says it doused the affected areas with an anti-fungal and mould treatment and Abigail is on a waiting list to be moved.

A spokeswoman said: “The Property Services Manager noticed during the visit on November 11 that there was an area of cracked plaster in the hallway above the door which was identified to potentially be artex which could contain asbestos. Ms Davies was advised not to disturb the area and an appointment was arranged for our contractor to attend on November 18 to investigate and remove or treat as necessary.

“From our recent inspection of the property, whilst there are some areas of mould growth, which is possibly a result on condensation within the property, and, therefore, needs to be cleaned away, the property is fit for habitation and there is no evidence of damp in the property.

“I can assure you that EPIC has been proactive in dealing with the issues of damp reported by Ms Davies and will continue to monitor the situation.

“I can confirm that Ms Davies is on the waiting list for a two bedroom house, however, at this time there are a number of applicants above her. Houses are in high demand and EPIC has fairly low turnover. I would, therefore, advise Ms Davies to contact other housing providers in the area, details of which will be available from Stoke-on-Trent City Council.”

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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