Damp and mould ruining Norwich family’s life

A Norwich couple say they are having to sleep in their living room with their five-month-old baby because of damp problems at their Norwich home.

Damp and mould has caused Ian Peart, 39, a mechanic and Amanda Brown, 27, a support worker, problems at their home on Holls Lane, off Queens Road, for more than a year.

Miss Brown said: 'I have been reporting the damp since September 2009. The mould has got so bad it is black and has fur growing on it in some parts. The council did send someone out to see us in late 2009 but reported back that there was no damp. We were advised by the council to keep our heating on and the windows open and to clean the mould.'

The situation has forced the couple and Miss Brown's son, Reece, to sleep in the living room because the damp in their bedroom has become so severe.

The mould is spreading and Miss Brown is becoming increasingly concerned for Reece's health. When she pulled his cot away from the wall it was covered in black mould. The family's health visitor has also complained to the council.

'It is not good enough. Reece is my main concern, he developed a bad cough so we moved into the living room.

'As soon as I go through the door the small of damp hits me in the face. It's horrible and I am too embarrassed to have any friends round. Our TV unit is wet with damp which is coming from the ceiling and speakers have mould growing on them,' Miss Brown said.

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A spokesman for Norwich City Council said: 'In recent months, following the collapse of a company which was our main contractor for our housing services, we have had to prioritise emergency services.

'More general reports are still important to us and we would like to reassure tenants that these will be dealt with as soon as possible.

'If a tenant reports a problem of damp, we take this seriously and investigate the cause. In some cases, however, when a surveyor visits a property they discover it is not an issue of repair but that damp has been caused by condensation from normal activities such as cooking and drying clothes and the solution is to do things to reduce this moisture build-up, ventilate the home and keep it warm.

'Even if we have in previous years investigated a property and found there is not a problem, we will still take a report seriously and see if one had developed, as has happened in this case.'