An 82-year-old widow said she is “terrified” of where she lives as she’s one of the few tenants left in a tower block with 275 flats.
Heather Richmond said she’s been in limbo since people started being rehoused from the eerie building in North Ayrshire, Scotland, three years ago.
The great great grandmother, who suffers from Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), has been on the housing list since 2014 and while she would’ve thought she’d be a priority for the council in Irvine, she is yet to be relocated.
An emotional Heather told the Daily Record her ordeal has been made worse by the fact that she can’t even leave her property due to her struggle walking, making everything even more stressful than it already is.
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Heather has witnessed all her neighbours being relocated by the council as the flats are set for demolition.
Heather, who lives with her daughter Beverley, 62, said: “I have had blackouts and am scared to go out. There is no extractor fan. It is terrible.
“I double lock my door. I have heard strange tapping noises. I don’t feel there is empathy or sympathy. I am terrified.”
The widow, who was married to Robert for almost 40 years, is fighting for a three-bedroom house in the Castlepark area for herself and family.
But the council said it can take longer for specific types of properties to become available.
Heather wants to be near her daughter Rosemary in the area — who has had cancer.
The council has offered her homes elsewhere but she said they are not suitable. It was recommended she go into a care home, which she is is strongly against.
Heather said: “Why should I be told what area I have to live in. They don’t seem to want me to live in Castlepark. They have offered me homes further away from Castlepark.”
The former administrator and screenprinter was involved in the community as a member of the housing committee. She has happy memories and remembers the flats bustling with residents in the past.
Reflecting on the past, she said: “They are all gone now.”
A North Ayrshire Council spokesperson said: “While we generally don’t comment on individual tenants, we can confirm that we are working to ensure our remaining high flats residents are re-homed.
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“We have been keen to ensure that tenants are re-homed in a property which meets their needs and in locations they have requested.
“In some cases, it may take slightly longer for such a property to become available.
“This has been a huge undertaking and we are pleased that the vast majority of tenants have already settled into their new homes.
“In the meantime, we will continue to work with the remaining residents to find suitable new properties.”