Mum ‘devastated’ after council tells her to move out of family home

Kirsty Craven with her five-month-old son Freddie at the house in Fisher Road, Bridgemary
Kirsty Craven with her five-month-old son Freddie at the house in Fisher Road, Bridgemary
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A HEARTBROKEN mother has been told that she must leave her home – after the deaths of both her parents.

Mother-of-two Kirsty Craven, from Gosport, left her previous home, rented from a housing association, to look after her father, following the death of her mother back in October 2016.

After her father died in September, the 30-year-old was told that she would have to leave the home in Bridgemary, since the tenancy had already passed through the family.

But with the sentimental value of the house, Kirsty wants to stay in her home, saying that she has already sacrificed everything to be there.

She said: ‘I am absolutely devastated by what is happening.

‘I had my own family home and gave that up to go and look after my father and I gave it all up for them.

‘The letter came through just after my father died – we hadn’t even held the funeral yet when the council informed us that we would have to move on.

‘To me, it feels as though we have been really wronged – the council is really lacking in compassion, given the circumstances.

‘They say they know how it feels, but I don’t think they truly understand at all. It is like my whole world is crashing down around me.’

Since receiving the news, Kirsty has set up an online petition, which currently has around 3,000 signatures.

Kirsty said: ‘I don’t want people to think “oh poor Kirsty” but the situation has been incredibly stressful for our family.

‘My three-year-old daughter is incredibly unsettled and I don’t know where to apply for her school place – because we have no idea where we’re going to end up.

‘We don’t even know where we are going to be for Christmas this year. It is a complete disaster and it breaks my heart.’

Gosport Borough Council says that the family will be rehoused, but cannot stay because their current home counts as a four-bedroom property.

Julie Smith, head of housing at Gosport Borough Council, said: ‘We have every sympathy with the family and understand they’re going through a difficult period.

‘But we also have to consider the 69 Gosport families on our waiting list who need a home this size, some of whom are homeless. This house is capable of having four bedrooms and, in the last two years, only two other four-bedroom houses have become available in the borough.

‘We appreciate the family are dealing with a recent bereavement and are happy to waive the four weeks’ notice to give them some time.

‘We’ll be doing everything we can to help them find another tenancy, which fits their needs. The first step will be to have a meeting where we can fully assess those needs.

‘They won’t be left without a home.’