Tenants feel ‘suffocated’ by black mould

'I shouldn't be sharing a room with my brother at 26'

Thursday, 21st July — By Frankie Lister-Fell

snowman Image 2022-07-21 at 8.58.34 AM (21)

The scale of the black mould on the ceiling

A FAMILY of five living in a two-bed tower block council  in Kilburn feel “suffocated” from leaking ceilings and mould, which they have endured for 28 years.

“The smell feels very suffocating. It doesn’t feel like a home you want to go back to, especially in the winter when it gets really damp and we have to move the beds just so the water doesn’t fall on our faces,” said Angelica Castor, 26, about her home in Snowman House in Abbey Road.

Black mould and damp pervade the flat’s ceilings and walls in the bathroom, kitchen, living room and bedroom. Buckets in the kitchen and bathroom collect drips of water and they’ve moved their oven away from the wall so that water doesn’t flood the electrics.

The bathroom was so damp that tiles fell off.

Ms Castor contacted the council via the building’s resident-run Abbey Road Co-Op at the start of the pandemic. She said someone came in June 2020 to seal the roof from the outside and promised they would send someone to fix the problem but no one returned.

After the New Journal enquired, the Town Hall is now working to “urgently arrange the repairs”. Ronald, Ms Castor’s 35-year-old brother, believes the mould contributed to his recent asthmatic attacks, which began when he turned 25.

Their 17-year-old brother, who Ms Castor shares a bedroom with, was born with asthma.

Ms Castor, who suffers from a type of arthritis called ankylosing spondylitis, applied to move home last month, but she’s worried she won’t score enough “points” to be considered a priority by the council.

“I shouldn’t be sharing a room with my younger brother at 26. I need my own space,” she said.

Snowman House

A Camden Council spokesperson said: “The source of the leak has been identified and our specialist damp and mould team are carrying out the necessary repairs to urgently address this issue. They will also fully assess the family’s home and schedule the additional repairs that are needed within the property.

“We are also supporting a member of the family to make an application to move to a property that is more suitable for their medical needs. Their application is currently being verified and, once this is completed, we will provide them with support to bid for a suitable council property.”

Related Articles