A Doncaster man is fighting to stay in the council home he has lived in for his entire life – over 40 years.
John Hewitt, 44, was born in his Goodison Boulevard home in Cantley but has now, following the death of his mother, Pamela, seven weeks ago, been told he must move out by landlords St Leger Homes.
He is being forced to move because the house - which was been in the family for over 50 years – was originally rented by his grandfather. His parents took over the tenancy on his death, but housing regulations forbid tenancies being passed on twice, and so it cannot be transferred to Mr Hewitt.
Sister Sandra Touhig told the Free Press: “John was born in this house 44 years ago and now the council wants him out, it’s not fair.
“Our family have spent thousands of pounds on the property – we had a new kitchen, carpets throughout and a complete redecoration six months ago.
“It’s a family home – it’s our home. John’s lived here his whole life.
“He’s very depressed about what’s happened.
“I’ve lost one brother to suicide, I’m not losing another.
“John should be grieving for our mum, not going through all this.”
However, St Leger Homes appears determined to stick to the rules.
Its chief executive, Susan Jordan, said: “We understand that this is a difficult time for Mr Hewitt and we hope to be able to work with him to find a solution to this issue.
“We have offered to support him in moving from the three-bedroom house he currently lives in to a smaller property, although we appreciate that this may not his preferred option.
“This action is necessary to maintain our fair and consistent tenancy policies which are in place to make sure that the limited number of properties are used effectively to meet housing needs.
“Unfortunately Mr Hewitt is not able to take over the tenancy from his mother because only one succession of a tenancy is permitted under UK housing law, and this has already taken place.
“It is our practice in these circumstances to offer Mr Hewitt a new tenancy in his own name, and as a single householder he is eligible for the tenancy of a one-bedroom home.”