Edinburgh councillors demand review of high rise housing conditions after mum’s horrific mould ordeal

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Councillors have demanded a review of housing conditions and repairs at high rise flats after a family was moved from their home after widespread problems with mould.

The city council’s housing and economy committee agreed an emergency motion by Green Cllr Claire Miller after Stacey McNeill, was forced to take her children to hospital after her 13th floor flat in Muirhouse was laced in black mould.

Stacey McNeill, the Muirhouse mum whose children were hospitalised. Pic: Lisa Ferguson

Stacey McNeill, the Muirhouse mum whose children were hospitalised. Pic: Lisa Ferguson

The motion agreed by councillors will require officers to draw up a briefing on reviewing the conditions and repair work to be carried out. Last year, poor living standards in the council’s six high rise blocks in Muirhouse were highlighted following research by tenant group Living Rent.

Work is ongoing by the council to address and carry out any repairs that are needed.

Cllr Miller said: “I understand the family have been placed in accommodation and that has been dealt with – but it raised a wider issue that there’s work ongoing with repairs and maintenance. There have been some issues previously raised around housing in Muirhouse.

“It was incredibly concerning to read that in the press and we would 
like to think we wouldn’t have any other houses in that condition. I don’t 
think that’s where any of us want to be in terms of homes.”

Liberal Democrat ward Cllr Kevin Lang told the committee there was “genuine frustration and concern amongst tenants”.

He added: “I think it’s worth saying that of all the areas we get involved in around housing, issues relating to property repair problems cause me most concern and anxiety.

“This is an example where repair work has been carried out to an unacceptable standard. While this is a 
particularly bad case, it 
does reflect issues that 
exist.

“That whole process seems to be quite detached from housing officers who have been the point of contact for tenants.”

Conservative housing spokesman, Cllr Cameron Rose called for an assurance that the work and reports by the soon to be axed north west locality committee on the Muirhouse problems, did not slip through the cracks.

Housing and economy convener, Cllr Kate Campbell, said: “We will have a report coming back in June which will look at the repairs and another report that will come back when we are further down the road in this process.”