A DAD has been forced to insulate his freezing home with CARDBOARD after his energy bills spiralled to more than £1,000-a-month.
Nigel Cleall, 51, says he has even considered moving him and his 12-year-old son Oliver into his garden shed which he says is warmer than his ground floor flat.
In a desperate bid to keep warm this winter, Nigel bought 100m of industrial packing cardboard for just £1 off eBay.
He has now used it to cover the walls and ceilings of the 1950s prefabricated two-bed property in Martley, Worcs.
The lorry driver says he was forced to take action after Platform Housing Association, which owns the flat, failed to fix the heating system or provide adequate insulation.
He said the walls and ceiling are not insulated as well as they should be which is why the heat is quick to leave the building.
Nigel said: “I’m basically heating Martley, when I put my heating on, it goes through the ceiling. The roof is over 27 years old.
“I’m heating up my street, not my house. The heating just goes through the house because there is no insulation.
“It’s a prefab flat with a concrete floor built in the 1950s and is simply no longer fit for purpose. It’s basically a garage.
“Platform Building came out with a thermal imaging camera to see how insulated it was and you could see heat leaking out everywhere.
“The windows are 18 years old, the roof leaks when it rains and it’s so cold I have to wear a coat while I watch TV.
“My plan of action is to cardboard up my walls in the front room.
“Obviously, I will have to use my other rooms but I will live in my front room during the winter.”
Nigel, who has separated from his wife who lives with their other son Christopher, 12, says he simply cannot afford to put the heating on.
He said: “I come home from work and can’t put the heating on.
“I can’t afford it, I’m a single dad.
“Last year, I could only afford to put the heating on when my boys were coming down to stay with me.
“But I can’t even afford that now.
“If I did that now, it would cost me £78 just for two days.
“Last year, it cost me £120-a-week on electric, now I’m looking at £192-a-week and I cannot afford it.
“I can’t afford nearly £200-a-month on my electric, so basically we will be living in my front room.
“All I want is a comfy home for me and my son, Oliver.
“I go to work, and I keep my nose clean and I am not a criminal.
“I do everything by the book and you just don’t get anywhere, it is just wrong.”
Dennis Evans, executive director (Property Management) at Platform Housing Group said: “We are sorry to hear of Mr Cleall’s concerns; we are pleased to report that a replacement bath is due to be installed later this month.
“With regards to the customer’s heating, we have no outstanding jobs at his home.
“However, we are due to attend a routine heating service as part of our yearly cycle.
“Earlier this month we also sent one of our surveyors to visit Mr Cleall to discuss his concerns.”
Here’s some tips on how to insulate four draught energy-guzzling hotspots in your home cheaply.
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