Family-of-eight living in sewage-wrecked home haven’t been able to shower for weeks
A dad-of-six living in a home flooded with sewage claims the local council have refused to fix the issue and the large family have been unable to shower for six weeks.
The bathroom of the Hardys’ three-bedroom house has been locked off since the start of November, when waves of poo and sewer waste started bursting up through the toilet into their property.
In addition to the sewage, the home is infested with rodents that gnaw through their kitchen cupboards and also poo everywhere.
Concerned dad Sam, 31, says his young children, aged between one and nine, are becoming chronically ill with sickness and diarrhoea.
He is also anxious about his 30-week pregnant partner Rachel, and the health of his unborn seventh child.
Mum Rachel says the family haven’t been able to shower or bathe for six weeks.
She said the council promised a fix on Friday, but that nothing was resolved and “my kids have to without a wash even longer”.
The council has since said it has visited the property and it was awaiting confirmation the drain had been unblocked.
Rachel told The Sun : “They just don’t care about us, they see us as scum, but we are desperate.
“My kids deserve better and shouldn’t have to live like this, and Sam and I constantly feel stressed and depressed.”
With no other options, the couple have had to fill up a small bath, which is designed for babies, with a kettle in order to wash the kids and themselves.
For four hours yesterday, they plunged their bare hands into the drain to unblock it, because a maintenance worker failed to do so, they claim.
When it’s time to wash in the tiny makeshift bath, Rachel lays blankets on the kitchen floor, but says the family shouldn’t have to do so in the modern age.
“A nine-year-old should not be washing in a baby bath. This is 2021, not 1821,” she adds.
Sam claims the council are refusing to help the family, and he’s had enough of dealing with them.
Sam, from Southsea in Portsmouth, Hampshire, said: “My kids shouldn’t have to live like this.
“The sewage is squirting out from the downstairs toilet all over the floor.
“Every time we use the shower or flush the toilet upstairs, the toilet downstairs will start filling up and sewage will start spewing over and coming out of different pipes.”
Sam says there is an outdoor drain that’s also blocked and leaking sewage.
On top of having to constantly clear the home and garden of fecal matter and toilet roll, the home is also infested with mice.
“Every single night” the couple wake up to find the mice have plundered the kitchen, and nibbled through the cupboards and shelves.
Sam claims the council hasn’t lifted a finger to help despite the issue continuing for nearly two months.
He believes it’s because he owes the council £400, which he’s steadily repaying, after a benefit change.
And he claims the council have told him that they will help once he repays his outstanding debt.
The couple got social services, their midwife, and the kid’s school to write to the council, but they “haven’t done anything except asking for their money”.
The horrific living conditions have left the couple suffering with depression and anxiety as they feel trapped and hopeless.
They claim the kids, aged one, three, four, five, six and nine, are visiting the doctors often with conditions they link to the situation.
In a desperate attempt to find out what’s wrong with them, they even phone 111 because “we were so worried”.
But 111 told them it’s unlikely it will be the mice and sewage.
A spokesperson for Portsmouth City Council told The Mirror: “Council officers attended the property on Wednesday last week and an order was raised for a drain to be unblocked on Friday.
“We are waiting for confirmation that the drain was unblocked. We will also be helping the tenants clear the front and rear gardens, treat for mice and carry out any other repairs that are required.”
In a separate statement shared to The Sun, the council said they are not “withholding any services” from the family and have made several visits to the home.
They claimed to have taken appropriate action, and that they weren’t notified about sewage at the property.
The council added that a housing officer will be in touch with tenants and visit to “investigate the situation”.