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Damp in our home led to Christmas in hospital for baby
CONCERN: Martin Griffin outside his home in Grenville Road, Dines Green. Picture by John Anyon. 0113213006
A FAMILY looking forward to their first Christmas with a new baby believe damp caused him to spend the day in hospital with a chest infection.
Four-month-old Riley Griffin was taken to hospital six times between December 23 and New Year’s Day after appearing lifeless and struggling to breathe.
His family blame black mould forming around doors, windows and ceilings at their home in Grenville Road, Dines Green, Worcester, for causing the little boy’s bronchitis.
Riley’s grandfather Martin Griffin, a full-time carer for his partner, said there had been a problem with mould in the Worcester Community Housing-owned house for the last 20 years but it had increased in the last four years.
Despite the association carrying out £1,300-worth of repairs including replastering five ceilings in the property this summer and Mr Griffin’s best efforts to rid the house of damp, the mould keeps returning and has spread to every room.
The 51-year-old cleans away the black stains morning and night as well as using draft excluders and silicone around windows and keeping the house ventilated throughout the evening.
“It’s heartbreaking,” he said. “We redecorated the house this summer but the mould has come out all over the walls and I’ve scrubbed away patches of wallpaper trying to clean it off.”
Things came to a head when Mr Griffin and his daughter Jodie, who lives at the house, spent Christmas Day at Worcestershire Royal Hospital with the baby.
Miss Griffin, 26, said: “It was terrifying. He was lifeless and struggling to breathe. We had made plans for Christmas to visit his aunties but he didn’t even get to open his presents until December 31.”
Riley has been given an inhaler and nebuliser by doctors.
The mould is also affecting Mr Griffin’s partner, Margaret Price, who uses oxygen to combat heart problems, and Mr Griffin believes ripped felt in the attic may be to blame.
Helen Scarrett, WCH housing and customer services director, said they were sorry to hear of the family’s problems but that the roof felt should not be to blame for the damp.
“We are surprised to hear that damp is still a problem for them as we have carried out a significant amount of work to their home this year.”
She said she was not aware of any further reports of damp but that the association would investigate further.