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Childminder forced to live in mouldy ‘evil smelling’ temporary flat in Brondesbury Park

PUBLISHED: 09:06 14 November 2018 | UPDATED: 10:21 15 November 2018

Grace Koroma-Sesay, highlighting dampness in her Brondesbury home. Picture: Jonathan Goldberg

Grace Koroma-Sesay, highlighting dampness in her Brondesbury home. Picture: Jonathan Goldberg

Jonathan Goldberg

A Brondesbury childminder whose health is deteriorating in her damp-ridden flat is pleading with the council to sort the problem out.

Grace Keroma-Sesay is despairing, saying nothing is being done by landlord Brent Council – who placed her in the “temporary flat” in Alan Preece Court, Brondesbury Park, three years ago.

The 58-year-old childminder says she’s developed rashes on her body and breathing difficulties since moving in, which she claimed she never had before.

The stench in her home was so bad that Brent & Kilburn Times photographer Jonathan Goldberg said after visiting: “I felt great sympathy for this woman – such an evil, damp smell everywhere.”

Grace told us: “I’ve so many rashes on my neck and nose. My tear ducts are blocked. I have problems breathing like I’m having an asthma attack, which I never had before, and fungal infections because of the damp.

“And the smell is unbearable. I can’t do my childminding – I have to take the children to the library for three hours or the park. I don’t have a comfortable life at all.

“I’m so weak now. Somebody must do something.”

Grace was told she would be living in the flat for a year.

She has letters of support from her doctor and has approached Willesden charity Advice for Renters, but still she waits for repairs to be carried out.

Meanwhile, the tiles in her bathroom fell off because of the damp and she’s been forced to throw away damaged clothes.

“I put down rugs to cover the damp and mould but it comes through it,” said Grace.

“This flat needs major work. I’ve told the council many, many times. I can’t deal with the issue any more.”

A Brent Council spokesperson said: “Our repairs contractor is ready to investigate and carry out any work that’s needed.

“We will do everything we can to resolve the situation speedily.”

The council did not say why the property had been left to deteriorate for so long.

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