A WORRIED mum has hit out at the state of the home she rents from East Lothian Council, claiming the dampness and mould is affecting her son’s health.

Kayleigh Millar, 25, shares the one-bedroom house on Stoneyhill Place, which is classed as temporary accommodation, with her partner and their four-year-old son Riley.

She said that she had been in temporary housing since Riley was a month old because living with her mum at her home in the Edenhall area of the town became too cramped for the family.

“I got a two-bedroom temporary house at Millhill in Musselburgh but that was covered in dampness as well. [The council] said they’d move me but I didn’t think they’d move me to a one-bedroom house,” said Kayleigh.

She added: “We were all sleeping in the same room until last week but I managed to get myself a sofa bed, so we sleep downstairs in the living room and Riley sleeps in the bedroom.

“He is not keeping well with all the dampness. He has a wheezing chest and is constantly getting up in the night and being sick. I don’t know if that is because he is breathing in bad air.

“I have been to the doctor and they said to keep an eye on it and, if his chest gets worse, come back.

“He is having to stay at my mum’s every second night just to get him a bit upbeat because he’s always coughing. It has got worse over time.”

Kayleigh said there was dampness in the bathroom when she moved into the house, which is owned by a landlord, with the council taking over the “contract”. Her son was about one-and-a-half years old at the time.

She said: “You could see they had tried to fix it but, within time, it just started spreading. The worst room is the bathroom.

“I think this is a joke. I am on antidepressants as I am not keeping well. I am just not coping with it all.

“It is ridiculous that they can think three people can live in this house, especially the state of it. It is not practical.”

Kayleigh said she wanted to move house but claimed she was “hitting her head against a brick wall” with the council, which said she owed £2,000 in rent arrears.

She is disputing that amount, adding: “I don’t think it’s that much. Universal Credit takes £100 off me a month for my rent arrears alone plus my rent. I have been paying it off a good couple of months.

“You are only meant to be in temporary accommodation for six months to a year. When I first moved here, Universal Credit didn’t pay my first couple of months rent until my claim started. My partner and I get a joint claim.”

She added that because of the rent arrears, her application for a council house was frozen but she heard recently it was now up and running again.

Kayleigh said: “The council has been out two or three times taking pictures of the dampness but hasn’t done anything.”

A spokesperson for East Lothian Council said: “We know there is significant demand for housing, which is why we are investing in new and improved council housing in East Lothian. We are also working hard to reduce the amount of time spent in temporary accommodation and to support tenants, including those with rent arrears.

“In cases of dampness in properties, one of the main contributing factors can be condensation, which has numerous causes including cooking without using an extractor fan or opening a window; bathing without opening a window or wiping down surfaces; and drying large amounts of wet washing indoors.

“We continually strive to help and advise tenants about how to avoid this, including articles in our tenants’ newsletter and a separate leaflet on the issue which is available on our website, in council offices and through our housing and repairs officers. Anyone who has issues with dampness can get in touch via their housing officer or by phoning the call centre on 01620 827827.”