‘Please help us, we just can’t go on like this…’ – Kent Online

A family of five who are living in a vermin-infested house which floods because of broken windows are desperate to move.

Mum Cardell Bursey broke down in tears as she told how she wakes every morning to find bugs crawling over the face of their severely-disabled son.

Stephen Bursey explains the family's difficult circumstances

Husband Stephen, who suffers from high-blood pressure and vitamin deficiency, has become too ill to work.

In the garden they have found dead rats and mice and inside beetle like insects are appearing from dark and mouldy walls.

There and mice droppings and the stench of animal urine throughout the property in Chatham.

Cardell, 50, said: "It's horrendous. I get so upset seeing the effect it is having on my family. Every day I get up and have to clear up."

Their son Mitchell, 11, has Down syndrome as well as asthma, sleep apnoea, numerous mental health and learning difficulties.

Cardell, who is also mum to Joseph, 12, and Hayley, 17, said Mitchell has global development delay which means he takes longer to achieve the usual milestones, like walking and speaking.

She said: "He has no sense of danger and can't tell me what's wrong. I can't let him into the garden because he would start playing with the rats.

"His bedroom is right at the top and he has to walk 43 steps to get to bed.

"Sometimes he's too tired and we have to carry him up there and other times he has fallen down.

The couple have had to install a metal gate outside the front door to stop him getting out onto the busy road near Chatham railway station.

He has has once tried to get out of an upstairs window and was seen hanging from the window ledge.

The family have lived at the four-storey property for nine years and the situation has got much worse in recent years.

They say pleas to the landlord London and Quadrant (L&Q) to carry out repairs have been ignored.

She said: "When we have told them about Mitchell's medical condition they have asked for evidence which we have provided.

"But still nothing has been done he needs 24/7 attention. We can't go on like this. Nobody deserves to live like this and bring up a family in this."

His paediatric physiotherapist has written confirming Mitchell, a pupil at Abbey Court Special School in Strood would benefit from a more suitable two-floor home and garden to support his physical motor development.

Ward councillor and Medway Labour group leader Vince Maple has visited their home and taken up their case.

He said: To have anyone living in Medway in the circumstances that the Bursey family find themselves in is unacceptable.

"Things like a broken window for more than six years is a disgrace. Ive contacted L&Q on their behalf and I hope we see urgent action to make sure this family are in suitable accommodation as soon as possible.

An L&Q spokesman said: Were sorry to hear they are unhappy in their home.

The safety and welfare of our residents is our top priority, and we have been working with the family to put this right.

We visited in June and again this month, and agreed to carry out a number of works across the property, including a window replacement, the installation of a new condensation fan, removal of mould and damp and redecoration. These will be carried out as a matter of urgency.

Pest control have visited the property a number of times since July last year to deal with mice infestations.

The residents reported a bed bug infestation in September, which pest control have been asked to address.

We are in regular contact with Mr and Mrs Bursey and will continue to work with them to address their concerns.

Read more: All the latest news from Medway

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'Please help us, we just can't go on like this...' - Kent Online

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