Honiton man suffers seizure over housing worry

PUBLISHED: 10:14 15 July 2009 | UPDATED: 23:49 15 June 2010

Michael Reeves.

Michael Reeves.

A HONITON man, who has a brain tumour, says he suffered an epileptic fit after worrying about housing.

A HONITON man, who has a brain tumour, says he suffered an epileptic fit after worrying about housing.

Refuse collector Michael Reeves, 31, lives with his partner Helen Webber, who is heavily pregnant, and his two children, aged 11 and six, from a previous relationship.

The family have moved to a four- bedroomed house in Blackthorn Close, but finding a suitable property was a nightmare, Mr Reeves says.

He told the Herald the family had been living in a two-bedroomed house, but were desperate to find larger accommodation before the baby, which is due on July 27, is born.

"I asked for help in every which way possible, but was snubbed," said Mr Reeves.

"East Devon District Council couldn't help ­- not even with a deposit for a private rent, because I work.

"I know it's not the council's fault that they haven't got properties.

"But the stress of it all led me to suffer a seizure. It's only the third one I've suffered since being diagnosed with having a brain tumour six years ago. The tumour is too small to operate on, but large enough to cause fits.

"My daughter is 11 and my son is six and, with a baby on the way, we couldn't stay living in a two-bedroomed house."

Mr Reeves added: "I don't agree that the Government should be taking £5.8 million-a-year from the council's rent account to give to poorly performing councils elsewhere.

"That £5.8 million could provide 500 houses in five years.

"That's a lot of homes for people who need them; it's disgusting.

"The stress made me ill for a week.

"I have been told in no uncertain terms not to stress myself out."

Mr Reeves was prompted to contact the Herald after reading how epilepsy sufferer Matthew Toates died in his sleep aged 22.

East Devon District Council's housing stock totals 4,298 pro­perties. There are 4,500 applicants on its waiting list.

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