Homeless Ollerton man has promised bungalow snatched away by council

A homeless Ollerton man who was promised a bungalow by council bosses - only to be denied the home less than a week later - says he is "dying of cold".

Robert Fillmore, aged 70, has been living on the streets of Ollerton for eight months after a family breakdown.

Robert Fillmore fights back tears after he had the offer of a bungalow snatched back by the council.

Robert Fillmore fights back tears after he had the offer of a bungalow snatched back by the council.

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He was offered a bungalow in Boughton on Tuesday, March 19 - only to be told on Monday March 25 he was no longer eligible to move in by Newark and Sherwood Homes, who work on behalf of Newark and Sherwood District Council.

Mr Fillmore, who suffers from numerous health issues including diabetes and angina, said: "I was supposed to collect the keys to the bungalow on Monday, but was told I was no longer eligible.

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"I was jumping for joy when I was told I could move in to the bungalow. I though finally - I'm off the streets.

"The council then told me an assessment had been done on me, and I had been moved from a band two priority to a band three.

"How can anyone asses me - nobody has even seen me."

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Newark and Sherwood Homes assess housing applications, then and place the applicant in one of four bands depending on their housing need.

Priority for housing is decided first by this priority band, then by local connection to Newark and Sherwood, and then by the date the priority was awarded.

However, Mr Fillmore cannot understand why he has been assessed as a lower priority when he is on the streets.

He added: "I'm out on the streets and I'm dying of cold.

"I'm on a lot of tablets and I cannot cope. I am not being supported."

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Mr Fillmore says he has not slept properly in five days, as he needs to use a sleep apnea mask.

"If I lay down and fall asleep, I will die.

"I have spend five nights walking all over the place because I can't sleep."

As well as his physical health, the situation is taking a serious toll on Mr Fillmore's mental health.

He added: "If i'd had my own way I wouldn't be here now. It's only because somebody that stopped me that I'm still here today."

A spokesman for Newark and Sherwood District Council said: “We cannot comment on individual circumstances for reasons of confidentiality, however in general terms, our main aim is to work with individuals to prevent homelessness wherever possible.

"As part of the process Newark and Sherwood District Council and Newark and Sherwood Homes will assess an individual’s circumstances at both the time of application and at the stage when accommodation is expected to be allocated.

"If the council and Newark and Sherwood Homes are satisfied that it has a legal duty to provide accommodation, this is provided.

"The demand for housing far exceeds the accommodation that we have available.

"Therefore we have to allocate each property strictly on a priority basis to those assessed to be in greatest need at the time of any particular allocation.

"Regrettably and inevitably this sometimes means that not all applicants, who present themselves as street homeless, fit the criteria of being in greatest need for a particular allocation.”