Tenant’s despair at council flat damp

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A Kirkby woman says she feels she is being ‘fobbed off’ by Ashfield Homes over the ongoing serious damp problem in the flat she lives in.

Wendy Asher (52) has complained dozens of times about the damp and mould in her flat on Manor Crescent in the two years she has been living there, but says that the problem keeps recurring.

The damp is so bad that there is a permanent smell in the flat and she has been forced to replace furniture, carpets, mattresses and clothes which have become covered in green and black mould.

“It’s very frustrating,” Wendy said. “Even though I love it here, I can’t do this. I am thinking about moving.”

Wendy suffers from ill health, having osteoarthritis, a severe stomach problem and COPD. She uses inhalers and says that sleeping in her damp bedroom means she needs to take them more frequently.

“I know it’s affecting my health,” she said.

“I have a breathing problem anyway but it’s worse: it’s a lot worse. I feel I am suffering.”

During the time Wendy has been raising the damp problem with Ashfield Homes, inspectors have been out many times and repairs have been carried out at the property, including laying new floors and treating damp in walls.

Wendy keeps her flat well-ventilated but the damp has affected every room in the flat and returns no matter what action is taken.

She is reaching the end of her tether due to Ashfield Homes’ inability to solve the problem.

“They should take me a bit more seriously and realise I am not in a position to keep buying new beds, mattresses and everything,” she said.

“I am appalled and disgusted with the way I am being treated.”

Kelly Scott, director of housing services at Ashfield Homes, said they have investigated all damp and mould related issues reported at Wendy’s home, offering ‘informative and constructive advice’ on the measures she could undertake to reduce the levels of humidity.

“Works have been undertaken, when access was provided, to improve the ventilation within Ms Asher’s home to assist with the moisture control,” he said.

“Ms Asher advised us that her situation had shown significant improvement and that she was satisfied with the actions of Ashfield Homes.

“We will continue to work with Ms Asher in respect of her enquiry and will carry out any repairs for which we are responsible to ensure customer satisfaction.”




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