Great-gran, 82, with lung cancer, left freezing without central heating for months
A terminally ill nan has been left without any central heating after her family’s requests for repairs were rejected.
Margaret Davies, 82, from Runcorn, Cheshire, has not been able to heat up her home since before Christmas, the Liverpool Echo reports.
The great-grandmother’s daughter Lynn Cowsill says a property manager told her it was not worth disrupting the housing block’s heating for ‘a couple’ of flats.
Margaret, who was given a year to live in November, is currently relying on a fan heater and weak oil radiators amid sub-zero temperatures across the country.
Lynn, 57, claims the fan heater generates a dry heat that affects her mum’s breathing and would be a fire hazard if left on at night.
The heating problems stemmed from a “comedy of errors” involving the way Halton Housing, which runs Brunswick House, had managed the central heating system, Lynn said.
She claimed boilers were installed in the block before Christmas and Halton Housing drained the network but an airlock formed and the heating stopped working.
It was fixed but the water was too hot, then it was too cold to stop Legionnaires’ disease, and when it was set to the right temperature, a couple of flats were left without heating, she claims.
Brunswick House has offered to cover the power costs of running the oil and fan heaters, but Lynn said this misses the point.
She said: “Halton Housing is going to pay the heating.
“I’m not bothered about money.
“We want the time mum’s got left alive to be comfortable – throwing money at it isn’t going to do any good if she passes away, if her COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder) flares up and we lose her.
“Halton Housing are going to give ‘compensation’ for using extra electricity, but it’s not going to make her more comfortable.”
Margaret is now facing the last months of her life and her daughter and son want her to live in comfort and dignity.
Giving a glimpse into her mother’s character, Lynn said: “Now she’s got lung cancer.
“They [doctors] offered her treatment and she turned it down.
“She said ‘use the money on the youngsters’.
“She will support everyone else.”
Lynn added that she feels her mum’s heating situation “disgusting in this day and age.”
Halton Housing said it was working to resolve the situation.
A Halton Housing spokeswoman said: “Ensuring our customers’ safety and wellbeing is our top priority.
“Whilst we are unable to comment on the specifics of individual cases, we are working with the customer and their family to resolve this situation and will do everything we can to minimise any distress caused.”