Anglesey mum ‘terrified’ for children living in ‘black mould’ council house
Dale Spridgeon, local democracy reporter
A mum is “terrified” for the health of her young children living with a black mould and damp problem at their Amlwch council home – after the death of a Rochdale toddler.
Beth Parry says she can “hardly sleep” from worry for her six-year-old son and nine-year-old daughter, who she claims have been made ill by the conditions at their Craig Y Don house.
The 28-year-old dental nurse and support worker has complained to Anglesey County Council – it confirmed it had received a complaint from a tenant and “an investigation is underway.”
Her concerns follow the death of two-year-old Awaab Ishak due to mould exposure. Awaab lived in a Rochdale Boroughwide Housing association home and died at Royal Oldham Hospital, December 21 last year.
Recording a narrative conclusion Manchester north’s senior coroner Joanne Kearsley’s report found he died as a result of a “severe respiratory condition due to prolonged exposure to mould in his home.”
The death was due to “Acute airway oedema with severe granulomatous tracheobronchitis due to environmental mould exposure.” During his short life, Awaab had recurring cold symptoms and respiratory tract infections; the coroner’s report said he attended his GP surgery “more than most children.”
Beth says her daughter and son are being impacted by the mould, claiming it has affected their chests, causes coughs and has seen them make regular visits to the doctors.
Beth claims to have a letter from a GP saying he is “shocked” at their living conditions, writing it was “unsuitable housing” and putting her “children’s lives at risk.”
Beth said “I have been on at the council for months about the damp, I keep being told I have to wait.”
She claims she first reported the problem in February 2021, again in October 2021 and November, 2022.
“Both my children’s chests are affected by the damp and black mould. My youngest has had antibiotics for his chest and wheezing and is on inhalers.
“He had a chest problem on and off for a while,and was quite poorly in December, we were back and forth to the surgery.
Her photos show mould in bedrooms, bathroom cupboard, window blinds and ceiling areas.
“They installed fans in the kitchen and bathroom, but that won’t solve it in the bedrooms.” she said.
“We’ve had nothing but problems dealing with housing repairs.” She said.
“They sent a workman to replace the skirting board near the door, but it was all rotten.
“I have to wait three weeks for an inspection, measurements, and work. I’m forever having to wait.
“When we moved in five years ago, the garden was full of glass, it took four years for them to sort it so my children could play in it.
“I work 56 hours a week, my partner Craig works fulltime. We pay full rent £110 a week. We’ve never miss a payment.
“I feel we are treated as if we don’t deserve a safe environment to live in, we should shut up and put up.
“I’m embarrassed raising this, but I have to do something for my children’s sake.
“I hardly dare sleep at night in case something happens to them, hearing about that little boy in Rochdale made me feel terrified for my children.”
An Isle of Anglesey County Council spokesperson said, “We can confirm that we have received an official complaint from one of our tenants in regard to mould in the property.
“The complaint is being investigated in line with our corporate complaints procedure, it would be inappropriate, therefore, to comment further until this process is concluded.”
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