A DISABLED couple claim they are living like prisoners in their own home because they cannot get their house adapted. Catherine Quekett with Pauline Rickson at her home which needs to be adapted.

Pensioners Pauline and Peter Rickson, of Hayes Road, Wolverley, have been fighting a two-year battle with Wyre Forest District Council to have a specially adapted low bath and shower installed because they cannot use a standard bath.

They are also annoyed about a hand rail which runs outside their home but does not extend to the end of the drive.

They are now at loggerheads with Wyre Forest Community Housing, which took over the running of the property last year.

Catherine Quekett, who has 11 years experience as a Citizen's Advocacy worker, disputes they are not high priority cases.

Mrs Rickson, 59, who suffers from arthritis, said: "We have not got the strength to climb into the bath sometimes, and have tremendous difficulty getting our vehicle on and off the drive.

"We are told we are not high priority at the moment and nothing can be done but we deserve a better quality of life than this. We are desperate."

Mr Rickson, 66, suffers from angina, high blood pressure and anaemia, and is due for a triple heart bypass operation soon.

But the housing group still does not class the couple as "severely disabled" to qualify for "high priority" action.

Now, the frustrated couple have turned to Wyre Forest MP David Lock who is looking into their case.

However, a Wyre Forest Community Housing spo-kesman said the couple had been made "quite aware" of their position.

He said: "Major works and adaptations, in particular flat access showers, are not funded by the company.

"The Housing Corporation expect us to apply to the district council for any improvement funds available under the Disabled Facilities Grant."

He added: "We rely on the specialist skills and expertise of the occupational therapists to prioritise needs, and these people stand by their previous assessment of Mr Rickson's needs as medium priority.

"Mrs Rickson's needs are to be judged in a few weeks time, but we are working to a backlog of two-and-a-half years of applications."