Suffering in their damp house

Family forced to live in uninhabitable conditions

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A widow has told how her family is suffering in their damp house and has been confined to living in a single room due to the widespread damp issues

The Edinburgh Evening News has recently reported on the story of Samantha Riddell, 23, and her two small children who claim they have been forced to live and sleep in their living room due to what they describe as uninhabitable conditions within both bedrooms due to the severe damp problems within their council property.

 Mrs Riddell comments on their damp house

Mrs Riddell, a recent widow after the tragic death of her partner who died three months ago within the family’s bathroom, advised: “My daughter's room is decorated but you can see the spores under her wallpaper, on the skirting boards and on the edges of the carpet. My bedroom walls have been stripped bare because all the mould was on the wallpaper.

"I couldn't even put wallpaper up because it just falls off.

"Having two kids living and sleeping in the living room is not ideal; they want to be able to play in their own room."

MSP tackles suffering in damp house

Colin Beattie, MSP for Midlothian North and Musselburgh, has taken up her case for Mrs Riddell and was speaking with the local authority about relocating the family.

East Lothian Council claims the mould problem is not caused by damp but because the house is not sufficiently ventilated after cooking and showering, resulting in excess condensation within the property.

Spokesperson for the council comments on damp house

A spokesperson for East Lothian Council said: "We cannot go into detail on individual cases but can confirm we are working with this tenant, who has an active application for housing transfer, to resolve the ongoing housing and property maintenance issues. We have inspected the property for dampness and have found that the problem is condensation and advice has been issued on how to rectify this."