Health and financial concerns are mounting for a Dulwich council tenant who has been dealing with severe mould for over two months.
James Gillespie, 56, first contacted the council about the issue on October 10.
Despite acknowledgement from the council and visits from various workers, the problem remains unresolved. James says he has a cough in his lungs and has to keep the windows open and the heating on to try and manage the mould, racking up costs.
He even said that the mould is giving him blurred vision. The beleaguered tenant says the council have offered him £50 in compensation, which he has refused – although the council say this was for a missed appointment, and compensation will be given at a later date.
James added that he has emailed the council repeatedly about the issue and tried to call with no response. “This is a serious matter and shows that they are not fit for purpose,” he said. “This is deplorable. Nothing will happen until the leader of the council takes personal responsibility.”
He first found the discovered the mould in his flat on October 6, when he happened to move a picture in his sitting room and found mould growing behind it.
The mould now covers a large part of his kitchen wall. A video, available on the News website, shows the extent of the damage.
Council officers visiting the flat have confirmed that the problem is the symptom of a broken mains pipe leaking into the walls. It is also affecting the flat below James.
Councillor Stephanie Cryan, cabinet member for council homes and homelessness, said: “We are getting closer to resolving this complex issue, with some repairs having taken place, and we are grateful for the cooperation of all residents in assisting with that.
“Some additional works have happened in a neighbouring property to ensure spillage is not a problem going forward. The main issue of a broken pipe is currently being resolved by our engineering team. We still wish to schedule some reinstatement works once the leak is fixed and we have agreement with the resident to do so.”