A family have spent the last 12 weeks living out of a hotel after fleeing their "rat-infested, hell hole of a house.
Terene Shaw and her children – daughter Meghan, 10, and son Joseph, seven – were moved into a new property on Oldham’s Limeside estate last October 6.
The move was part of a house swap with another Onward Homes tenant, but when the 41-year-old arrived, she discovered the property was “unliveable”.
READ MORE: Gran reveals why she's flogging £4.5m mansion she won for £25 just two months later
The mum claimed the property had 15 holes in the kitchen and plug sockets hanging off the walls and rats coming in and out of the gaps in the walls.
The house on Third Avenue was also affecting her family's health, with Terene saying she and her children regularly woke to find bite marks from bugs.
And when a sewer pipe burst at the rear property, it was the final straw.
On March 30, the family left the home and were moved into various hotels in the area while pest control was called in.
According to the MEN, Terene says it took six weeks from leaving the property before work began on it in May. Ultimately, she was in hotels for more than 12 weeks before she found a new, smaller home when she warned Onward Homes about her mental health.
She lost almost all her family's belongings and her health – both physical and mental – plummeted.
"I told my housing officer I didn't want to be in Limeside anymore," she said. "But that's where all our family and support are. My mum lives down there, she's 70.
Dad's fight to save £200k 'monster mansion' from bulldozers that 'looks like Travelodge'
"I don't feel like I got any support from Onward Homes. The way I feel regarding this, I don't recommend them to anybody."
Shane Crompton, a carer who works with Terene's family, was heartbroken to see the toll events took on the woman he has known for around 20 years.
"It was hard for me," he said. "I'm used to Terene being happy and bubbly, having fun. For me, the joy was totally ripped out from her."
The family were offered £300 after complaining about the ordeal but have since been battling to recover the money they spent on food and bus travel while living in hotels.
A spokesperson for Onward Homes, Terene's social landlord, said: “We sincerely regret the length of time taken to resolve the issues at Ms Shaw’s former home but are pleased that the family is now settled in a new home. We appreciate that this has been a difficult and distressing experience for our customer and we have apologised for this.
Bloke ordered to demolish second 'home' in garden – but he claims it's a 'caravan'
“We provided hotel accommodation to offer the family respite while we carried out the necessary repairs. Unfortunately, despite our best efforts, we were not always able to find hotel accommodation that included food at the hotel.
"Our Neighbourhood Team has worked closely with Ms Shaw and her family throughout and we regret the disruption and distress caused. We have already agreed to reimburse all out-of-pocket expenses resulting from Ms Shaw’s stay in temporary accommodation and provided replacement furnishings and new white goods for her new home.
"We have also contacted Ms Shaw to discuss further goodwill payments. We recognise that there have been wider issues with pest control in the Limeside area.
"We have established a team of specialists to address this, so we can sort the issue out once and for all. We will be in touch with any other affected residents individually to provide tailored support.”
Oldham Council confirmed it was contacted by Terene on April 18 regarding a collapsed drain and a rat infestation.
Cartels are using submarines to ferry drugs over the border – and destroying them after
She was referred to the council’s Tenancy Relations Service and given contact details for the Housing Ombudsman.
On the issue of rats across Limeside, Coun Chris Goodwin, cabinet member for neighbourhoods on Oldham Council, said: “In 2021 the council launched Don’t Trash Oldham because we know clean neighbourhoods are important to residents. Our staff are out working seven days a week to help keep all parts of Oldham tidy and in the last two years the campaign has been a great success and has helped improve communities across the borough.
“Unfortunately, over the last few years councils across the country have experienced an increase in call outs to deal with pests, a lot involving rats. We’ve recently created four new officer roles to help tackle the issue and we offer a free pest control service to residents who own their own homes, and those living in private rented accommodation.
“To help stop the spread of infestations, we urge people to make sure they are doing their bit by disposing of their waste properly. We also take action against those who fly-tip and dump rubbish as we know it attracts vermin – since we started Don’t Trash Oldham more than 600 people have been fined for environmental crimes.”
For the latest stories from across the globe from the Daily Star, sign up for our newsletter by clicking here – and check out the new WTF Wednesdays newsletter for everything brilliantly bizarre!
Source: Read Full Article