Mother of Two Suing Nye Bevan House Landlord

Says 'horrific' mould in Fulham flat caused her to be hospitalised


Nye Bevan House. Picture: Google Streetview

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A Mum-of-two is suing her landlord after “horrific” mould in her Fulham flat gave her an infection that left her hospitalised for 12 days.

Halima Mills, 35, says the mould and damp in her flat, owned by Notting Hill Genesis (NHG), has repeatedly made her ill, and gives her 19-year-old son nosebleeds.

She moved into the three-bed flat eight years ago, and says NHG has “failed” to keep her family safe.

The pre-school teacher said, “The mould is in every room. This flat is ruining me, it’s horrific.

“My lungs are weak, I constantly feel drained and tired. It hurts my eyes and sometimes I vomit in the morning.

“My voice is weak. I’m a young woman ― I shouldn’t sound like this and I shouldn’t feel like this.”

She added: “I’ve lost all trust with them [NHG]. I’ve always paid my rent, £760 per month. But they’ve not done their bit. They can’t keep my family safe. They’ve failed us and I just want this to end.”

Walking around the flat from room to room, large, dark patches appear to creep from behind beds and wardrobes and up the walls. Her windows are splashed with condensation, and watermarks are visible on her ceilings, door frames and skirting boards.

In April this year, Ms Mills became so ill that she felt her throat “close up”. At Chelsea and Westminster Hospital she was put in a critical-care unit. After a few uncertain days, she was diagnosed with a respiratory-tract infection, and forced to stay for nearly two weeks.

She now wants to sue NHG for the toll it has taken on her health, and the loss of earnings from time off work. The housing association ― formed in 2018 after a merger between Notting Hill and Genesis, and which owns 55,000 homes ― has written a schedule of works to renovate the flat, including ventilation systems.

But Ms Mills isn’t convinced their plan will be a permanent fix. She said: “The schedule of works mostly involves washing off the mould, but they have been trying that for years.

“I’m going to try and sue them. My solicitor said to stop cleaning the place so we can prove how bad it gets.

“Imagine what this is like in winter when you can’t open all the windows.”

The flat in Clem Attlee Court sits on the ground floor of Nye Bevan House, ironically named after the post-war Labour health minister who set up the NHS.

She was moved there eight years ago after Notting Hill was ordered by Hammersmith and Fulham Council to give her a new home, due to safety concerns with the previous one.

A Notting Hill Genesis spokesperson said: “We are aware of the problems being faced by the residents and apologise for the time it has taken to find a solution.

“Investigations have been ongoing for some time to find a solution we are confident will be a permanent one. This has included using an expert surveyor working for both us and the residents to come up with a specification of works to be carried out.

“A plan of works was finally agreed with the residents’ solicitor this week, which will see the installation of new windows, a new entrance door, new humidistat controlled fans in the bathroom and kitchen, a device to monitor temperature and humidity in the home, inspection of all bathroom plumbing, installing a whole house ventilation system, carrying out anti-mould treatment and treating and redecorating of affected areas.

“Quotes are now being sought so we can begin the repair work promptly.”

Owen Sheppard - Local Democracy Reporter

 

July 13, 2019

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