Man who lost everything shoved in ‘crack den’ council house
Written by Rother Radio News on 01/12/2020
A man who lost everything in a devastating flat fire has been left living in hotels after the council offered him temporary accommodation he described as a “crack den”.
Nathan Carlin, from Rotherham, had been out at work at a local community centre, where he helps vulnerable children, when the freak blaze erupted inside his flat on November 19.
By the time the 31-year-old found out and rushed home, there was nothing he could do and he had to watch his beloved flat burn. His three pet cats also perished.
It is thought the blaze was caused by a faulty microwave inside the flat in Lapwater Road in the town.
Now he has been left homeless, sleeping in hotel rooms and waiting for suitable replacement accommodation.
But Mr Carlin says despite his situation and his good work in the community, Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council offered him a flat that was like a “crack den”.
The flat in the Munsbrough area of the town has no carpets and Nathan has been told he can’t decorate, even though there is graffiti on the walls.
He said: “I have just lost everything in a fire and I thought the temporary accommodation would be alright and I could get back on my feet from there.
“But its near Christmas and I have been shoved in a disgusting flat in a bad area and told that I will be here for five months.
“There’s no furniture, carpets and there is graffiti on the walls but I have been told I can’t decorate as it is only temporary.
“I can only describe the place that they offered to me as like a crack den.
“I refused it as it is just not fit to live in so the council have been arranging hotel rooms for me as I just can’t stay there.
“I don’t want to stay with anyone because I am at my lowest and it’s not fair on others. It’s a time to be joyful and at the minute I’d be more like Scrooge.
“After everything I have been through and losing everything through no fault of my own, I just thought that the council would treat me better than this.”
Mr Carlin has written to his local MP and got in touch with councillors in a bid to improve his situation.
The council has arranged a hotel for him to stay in until December 4.
A GoFundMe page set up by a friend has managed to raise £1,380 for Nathan to help replace some of the things that he has lost.
If you would like to help Nathan you can donate to his Go Fund Me page here.
Rotherham Council’s Assistant Director for Housing, Tom Bell, said: “We are aware of the fire at the tenant’s property, and he has been supported by housing staff during this difficult time.
“An alternative property was found at short notice, which was within a short distance from his previous home. This was offered to him as a temporary solution, with advice being given with regard to redecoration and assistance available for furnishings.
“However, he later declined the property offer. We apologise for the poor condition of the property presented to the tenant.
“We’re aware that one wall within the flat contained a motif, which should have been removed as part of our property reletting process.
“The tenant has now been provided with temporary hotel accommodation by the Homelessness Service, who will be supporting him to find alternative accommodation.”