Mother and toddler twins face eviction from hostel after refusing house
A mother fears for the future of her twins after learning that her family will be kicked out of a hostel if they don’t accept an offer of ownership. Bethan Blunt rejected Vale of Glamorgan Council’s offer of a house because she is concerned about crime in the area.
The 26-year-old, whose sons Brody and Blake are three, said she became homeless in February following the end of a “difficult relationship”. She and her children moved from Sully to her mother’s house in Penarth, but Bethan said it was not viable due to the size of the house. “I was sleeping on a mattress on the floor and the boys were on a couch,” she added.
Bethan, Brody and Blake moved into the council’s Ty Iolo hostel in Ar Y Nant, Barry at the end of March. The council placed the family in their highest priority ‘gold-plus’ category on the waiting list for a two-bedroom home. But Bethan said she had been rejected out of 10 public housing offers and had only one option – a house in Dunlin Court, Castleland, which she had decided to turn down.
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“It was just the neighborhood,” she said. “I’m not expecting a mansion. I just wish I was somewhere not so drug-related and with less anti-social behavior and violence. I have family friends who live around Barry and know the area and they told me it’s not a very nice place to raise two little ones People say they can’t even leave their vans outside in that area without people biting stuff.
Bethan described the house as “very strange and dark”, adding: “It looked like a lot of work needed to be done. There were concrete floors in the bedrooms and the living room. And there were piles of mail all over the place. the ground, so it looked like no one wanted the property and the council couldn’t get anyone in there.”
The full-time mum wants to stay in Barry because her children have moved to the Red Robin playgroup in Dyfan Road, but she said it’s unlikely she’ll be able to afford private rent in the town she counts so on the board for support. But she claimed that when she turned down the Castleland property, the council told her she would have to leave the hostel by June 13 and would be moved to the lowest priority on the waiting list. .
“I was very worried,” she said. “If I was kicked out I would have to go back to my mum’s house but it’s too crowded. We were supposed to have priority. It’s definitely stressful and my boys have seen me go through periods of depression before because I’m in pain mental health I just want a place where I can be happy with my children.
“When I lived in Sully I couldn’t afford childcare, but now I’m in Barry, we’re in the Red Robin playgroup catchment area. In lockdown, the boys didn’t really have socialized with other kids and that’s definitely helped I don’t want to move from one area to another I want to be settled in the same place.
A Vale of Glamorgan Council spokesperson said: ‘Having been rendered homeless, Ms Blunt accepted accommodation at Ty Iolo, the council’s family hostel in March. Ms Blunt is registered with Homes4U, the council’s choice-based rental scheme, and regularly bids on properties which are allocated on a priority of need basis and in accordance with rental policy.
“Mrs Blunt recently chose to bid on a property she managed to secure before deciding she no longer wanted to live there. In these circumstances the best course of action, and that advised by Shelter Cymru, would be to move into the offered property before submitting a suitability review if deemed appropriate.
“Refusing the offer of a suitable property, which would solve his family’s homelessness problem, at this point would have required him to leave the hostel. This is in accordance with the Housing (Wales) Act 2014. We currently have over 50 families in temporary accommodation and a further 60 are being managed by the council’s housing solutions team. Although we do our best to provide accommodation in the area chosen by the applicant, the acute shortage of rental accommodation in the Vale of Glamorgan means this is not always possible.