A pregnant mum says she has been left fearing for her children’s health over extreme mould in her home.
Skye Joseph, 31, claims the conditions in her one-bed south-east London flat has affected her mental health, and are so bad she’s often forking out to replace items ruined by damp and mould.
The mum-of-three, who is pregnant with her fourth child, claims she discovered the issues shortly after moving into the Greenwich property back in 2009.
She said: ‘It was probably here when I first moved in but it was all freshly painted over so I wouldn’t have noticed.
‘Within a month or two of moving it all started coming out – the walls started caving in and the door frames are coming away due to the damp.’
Skye says this has only gotten ‘worse’, despite housing association L&Q sending contractors over to ‘bleach wash’ the walls on multiple occasions.
She said: ‘It’s literally costing me thousands to replace everything.
‘Moses baskets, shoes, clothes, boots, sofas, bunk beds – even down to food in the food cupboards which goes mouldy before the sell-by date.’
Skye says her three children sleep in the one bedroom in the property, while she sleeps on the sofa in the living room.
‘There are three children sleeping in one room, two of them are diagnosed with autism and one is asthmatic. I sleep in the front room.
‘The old sofa had mould all up the back from being up against the wall, I threw out a black bag of toys that were all mouldy.
‘I’ve thrown out everything of the kids and had to replace it all,’ she added.
While she cleans the walls every two weeks, she says black marks reappear within days.
Skye claims issues with condensation are so bad, puddles of water form on the floor of the bedroom in the mornings.
And she claimed: ‘I’ve been told it’s my fault for having too many children.. It makes me feel so rubbish because I always wanted a big family.
‘It’s horrible the way people think you plan to live in some horrible place and plan for your mental health to play up.’
She admitted to worrying about her family living in the Greenwich property, especially hearing of the death of toddler Awaab Ishak.
The two-year-old died in December 2020 from a respiratory condition caused by mould in the one-bedroom flat where he lived with his parents in Rochdale.
Awaab’s parents had previously complained to Rochdale Boroughwide Housing (RBH) about the condition of the home, an inquest at Rochdale Coroner’s Court was told.
The mum-of-three said: ‘I heard the story about that little boy and sobbed. I’m bringing up three children in these conditions.
‘It sets me back with my mental health. I don’t think I ever used to suffer as much as I do now.’
A spokesperson for L&Q said: ‘We are sorry for the problems Ms Joseph has been experiencing with her home. We are fully committed to providing safe and comfortable homes that are conducive to the good health of our residents, and we are working with Ms Joseph to ensure we put things right as quickly as possible.
‘Ms Joseph’s home has been assessed by our Healthy Homes programme, which focuses on tackling the root cause of mould and damp. As part of this process, our specialist contractors attended the property to carry out an inspection, treat the mould, and agree a number of measures to prevent the issue from reoccurring.
‘Our contractors have since visited several times over the last year to carry out repairs but have not yet been given access. We have contacted Ms Joseph again to try and make progress on these outstanding works.
‘Ms Joseph’s family are eligible for a larger property, and we are now actively searching for suitable accommodation in the area. In the meantime, we’ll offer her additional support and information to help better her understanding of the options available to her.’