Upwell family have lived in cramped conditions after flood

Lucy Housden in her flood affected home in Upwell. Picture: Matthew Usher. Lucy Housden in her flood affected home in Upwell. Picture: Matthew Usher.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014
5:46 PM

A family has been forced to live in a towing caravan in their garden since their home was flooded causing damage around £40,000.

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Lucy Housden in her flood affected home in Upwell. Picture: Matthew Usher.Lucy Housden in her flood affected home in Upwell. Picture: Matthew Usher.

Lucy Housden, 49, husband Robin, 62, and son Ben, 22, could no longer live in their house at Thurlands Drove, Upwell, after water contaminated by their cesspit, seeped through.

And the experience has had a stressful impact on the family, especially their son who has autism.

Mrs Housden, a part-time cook, said: “It has really unsettled him - he has cut all his hair off. He has his own living room and we have had to pack up all his stuff. He is obsessed with the internet and as we are in the caravan there isn’t any for him.”

She added: “It’s been so stressful us going to work every day, making phone calls trying to sort out the insurance.”

The family were on a break to Yorkshire when their home was flooded during the evening of Friday August 8.

Daughter Charlotte, 24, was staying at the house to look after the pets.

But when she returned from a wedding reception at around midnight, she came back to see the whole of the downstairs was flooded.

Mrs Housden said: “She phoned me straightaway and I immediately panicked, thinking that something has happened. I didn’t sleep all night and came back in the morning.

“Charlotte was making the firemen bacon sandwiches as they were there most of night pumping water out. We also have indoor cats who were terrified.”

The family have lived at their house since 1997 and have never been flooded before.

And since it happened, the family have slept in their caravan which has one bedroom for Ben and Mrs and Mr Housden sleep in the living area.

The house has been undergoing an extensive drying out process with large industrial fans. And when it’s dry it will need re-plastering, re-decorating and all the tiles will need lifting up and replacing which will all cost around £25,000.

And now, their buildings insurance, Axa Insurance, confirmed that they will foot the bill.

Jade Trimbee from the company, said: “It’s all on track and our loss adjustor has been liasing with Mr Housden and we will be giving him money this week.

“A static caravan will be delivered on Thursday at 8am, and although there has been a delay, it is quite normal as we needed to source it and test the ground.”

Not only that, but all the contents will need to be replaced, expected to cost around £16,000.

And Mrs Housden is anxious to know if she will be covered by her insurers, The Cooperative.

She said: “They are sending out someone tomorrow. I don’t know why they are taking so long. I have no idea if we will get all our stuff replaced.

Lauren Hoult from The Cooperative said: “We are very sorry to hear of Mrs Housden’s complaint and for any distress caused to her. Our executive complaints team are looking into this as a priority.”

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