A PREGNANT woman is pleading with the council to get rid of mould in her York home - amid fears for her baby’s health.

Helen McGreavy, 27 and her partner Jack Pycroft, 26, are expecting the birth of their daughter this month month and say they were given assurances by the council that the mould would be cleared from the house by the new year, but it is still a problem.

City of York Council said it had taken measures to reduce the damp and more work was planned.

Helen, of Arran Place, off Huntington Road, said she became concerned about the impact of the damp on the health of her baby after speaking to her midwife.

She said: “I informed the council about the damp when I first moved in to the property last September.

“They came to put some scaffolding up before Christmas and said that the damp would be sorted by the new year but it’s February and nothing else has been done.

“My midwife said that the damp could be a serious health hazard for the baby if it’s not removed.

“The damp is still here and I am due next week. I am very concerned for the health of the baby as we have just decorated the room for her arrival, but whilst there is still damp in her bedroom I don’t want her sleeping in there.”

Mike Gilsenan, head of building services at City of York Council, said: “We’re sorry to hear the tenant is still experiencing damp issues because, over the last few months, we’ve been working with them to resolve the problems.

“After internal and external inspections, we identified a leak and carried out a number of repairs to the roof and brickwork to mend it. We’ve also provided a dehumidifier to help dry out the home following the leak, and we will install new extractor fans in the kitchen and bathroom to improve ventilation.

“We’ve provided practical guidance on how heating and ventilation can be best used to minimise levels of condensation and bring about the required improvements.

“When needed, we also offer advice on energy saving measures and support with heating costs.”

Helen added that she could not afford to run the dehumidifier.

MP for York Central, Rachael Maskell, said that it was unacceptable for anyone to be living in a council house that contained damp.

She said: “I am aware the council are now carrying out some remedial work but they suggested a dehumidifier and Helen says she cannot afford to run this. For many people, the cost of their energy is a major concern at this time of the year and fuel bills are sky high. Fuel poverty is a particular concern for those on benefits or a low income.

“I have written to Helen’s energy supplier to ask if they can help. She should not be living in a damp property when she is pregnant and it is right that she receives some support.”

Ms Maskell added: “At this time of the year I receive a number of complaints from people who are suffering from damp in their council houses and also in privately rented accommodation.

“It is clearly unacceptable for anyone to have to live in a damp house and I have been campaigning to ‘Stamp out Damp’ throughout York.

“Damp impacts on peoples’ health and wellbeing, particular if they have respiratory problems. It also affects their mental health and it is not a good environment for someone who is pregnant.

“I wrote to City of York Council on Helen’s behalf to make them aware of the problems and to request assistance.”