'I'm being treated like a second class citizen' - Sheffield man's long battle over damp in council flat
An angry Sheffield man claims he is being treated 'like a second class citizen' by the council after living with rising damp in his flat for five years.
Richard Gregory told how black mould has climbed four feet high up the walls and the plaster is starting to come off in the kitchen, bathroom and living room at his 'freezing' council flat in Truman Grove, Deepcar.
The 37-year-old told how the dingy conditions have had a negative impact on his health problems, which include asthma and sleep disorder narcolepsy.
Mr Gregory said he has battled for years with the council to get the problem sorted but to no avail and has now released pictures of the grim state of his property to shame the authority into action.
The council has now vowed to take action but the embattled resident said the long struggle has left him 'feeling more depressed than ever'.
He added: "I feel like a second class citizen and it's soul destroying.
"I can't even put my food in the cupboard because it gets mouldy. I've had to put them in cardboard boxes on the side.
"The flat is freezing and I've had to live like this for years. It's making me ill."
He first moved into the property about five years ago and after about 18 months he noticed damp permeating his walls.
Mr Gregory is a former bricklayer and claimed he told the council the kitchen and bathroom needed replacing so the brickwork behind the plaster could be made more waterproof.
The authority painted over it with water-proof paint three years ago but the damp returned.
He said the council finally agreed to replace the kitchen and bathroom in October last year - but this will not be completed until March 28.
He said: "I kept saying it needs the rooms replacing but they kept putting it off, I think because they know it's a big job.
"It won't be completed for another couple of months and I've not had a start date for the work.
"In the meantime I'm still here in a damp flat."
A Sheffield Council spokesman said a specialist damp company has provided the authority with advice on how to remedy the problem and work will start later this month.
He added: "We will continue to be in contact with Mr Gregory to ensure the repairs are completed to his satisfaction."