Single mum-of-two, 21, claims her eight-month-old baby has ‘smoker’s cough’ due to mouldy council flat with no heating

A SINGLE mum has claimed her eight-month-baby has developed a “smoker’s cough” from living in a mouldy council flat with no heating.

Mum-of-two Melanie Knowles-Morgan, 21, said she has been living with damp and thick black mould – and even rats in the garden – for nine months in the Birmingham home.

Melanie Knowles-Morgan, 21, said her baby has developed a ‘smoker’s cough’ from the mould[/caption]
Melanie said the two-bedroom property has had no heating or hot water for weeks[/caption]
The damp inside the Birmingham council flat[/caption]

The full-time carer said the two-bedroom property has had no heating or hot water for weeks.

“My children are coughing all the time and I know it’s because of the mould. My youngest’s is particularly bad. It’s like a smoker’s cough,” she told Birmingham Live.

“I have been without hot water and had no heating for weeks despite
having children aged eight-months and two-years-old.”

Melanie said she has been told by the council to leave the property so the repairs can be carried out – but claimed she has nowhere to go.

“The council told me to move all of my furniture out of the way during
these three days, whilst the repairs are being done,” she said.

“But I don’t have anywhere I can go. I don’t have close family and I’m not going to take my ill children to the park for nine hours each day.

“One of my children has autism and cannot be here whilst they are
drilling holes and making loud noises as it will really frighten him.”

She said the council have asked her to move her appliances into a cupboard full of black mould and damp, as the current fridge space is the only suitable location for a new boiler.

“I cannot do this. My children are already constantly coughing. When they visited, the repair team told me my best bet is to move out of the property as I also have asbestos,” she said.

“This is what I want to happen, we need to be upgraded.”

Melanie added: “As well as all this, I constantly have bugs, slugs and ants in my property due to the conditions.

“My bathroom is also really old. The water pressure is really bad and the bath has a crack which cut me before.

“The back garden is unsafe and there are rats and no fence.”


Birmingham City Council has apologised for the “distress caused by ongoing repairs” at the flat and said the mould had “now been treated” – which Melanie refutes.

A council spokesman said: “The reported mould has now been treated and a further inspection is scheduled to ensure it has all been treated.

“The property has been asbestos surveyed by specialists. No asbestos was found apart from on the door of the airing cupboard which will be left as it is no danger to the tenant.

“In relation to the heating, a new boiler and radiators are being installed which will take place next week.

“An earlier appointment was offered to the tenant but they declined it.”

Birmingham City Council has apologised for the ‘distress caused by ongoing repairs’[/caption]

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