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Pensioner's nightmare mites plague

PUBLISHED: 00:55 16 June 2005 | UPDATED: 05:56 02 March 2010

A FRAIL Ipswich pensioner today broke down in tears as she described the nightmare of living with a plague of mites.

Lorna Daynton says her health is deteriorating as the pests crawl over her food, in her sink and even in her bed.

A FRAIL Ipswich pensioner today broke down in tears as she described the nightmare of living with a plague of mites.

Lorna Daynton says her health is deteriorating as the pests crawl over her food, in her sink and even in her bed.

The 69-year-old, who has suffered the infestation for five months, said: "I can't eat, I can't sleep – they are making me ill.

"I have got no one to turn to. I am desperate. I feel like chucking myself off the Orwell Bridge."

Mrs Daynton has to wrap her food in plastic bags and has covered all her furniture with polythene in a bid to keep the mites at bay.

She is having breathing difficulties and her doctor has told her to drink nutrient shakes because she becoming malnourished.

Mrs Baynton said the problems started shortly after moving into her Wherstead Road home.

The block of flats in which she lives was newly built last year and is owned by the Shaftesbury Housing Group.

Mrs Baynton says she contacted Shaftesbury in January, but the company said she was responsible for getting rid of the mites.

So she arranged for Ipswich Borough Council to kill the infestation, but after two unsuccessful attempts, the pests came back stronger.

She said: "I am getting depressed and sick. I have done my best to get rid of them.

"This is no way to live. I have told Shaftesbury but it seems like I am banging my head against a brick wall."

Help the Aged, a charity which offers support for elderly people, today expressed outrage at the situation.

Spokeswoman Sophie Davison said: "In the 21st century this is simply not an acceptable way to treat anyone, let alone our most vulnerable members of society."

Mrs Daynton is calling on Shaftesbury to re-home her and claims there are empty flats in her block that she could move into temporarily while investigations continue.

Shaftesbury, which prides itself on being a leading Christian social landlord, recently published its new customer care charter on their website.

A spokesman for the company said the first they heard of the problem was in April, but he added: "It was pointed out in the condition of her tenancy that unwanted pests or vermin are the responsibility of the tenant.

"We are trying to get to the bottom of where the mites are coming from. We are meeting an Ipswich Borough Council pest control officer on Friday."


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