THERE has been a "big upturn" in the number of complaints about damp and mould in Fife Council homes.

And there is currently a backlog of 300 cases where tenants are still waiting for action to be taken.

Last May a report outlined how the council were revamping their approach to the problems and at last week's meeting Councillor Nicola Patrick asked for an update.

Housing spokesperson, Cllr Judy Hamilton, said: "Housing have a plan to bring an up-to-date report around the damp and mould issues to the scrutiny committee by the Autumn.

"There has been a big upturn in complaints and we're currently working through what they call the winter backlog. The backlog is about 300 at the moment."

Central Fife Times: Fife Council was asked what they're doing to tackle damp and mould in their properties. Fife Council was asked what they're doing to tackle damp and mould in their properties. (Image: Pixabay)

The issue of substandard and unhealthy housing conditions was brought into sharp focus after the death of two-year-old Awaab Ishak, from Rochdale, in December 2020.

At an inquest in 2022 a coroner ruled that the little boy had died from prolonged exposure to mould in the local authority flat he lived in.Following the verdict, a review was ordered by Fife Council into how they tackle damp, condensation and black mould in their housing stock.

Since 2021 they have dealt with more than 1,600 complaints from tenants to do with damp and mould in their homes.

Last year, Cllr David Barratt said that, due to a backlog, a woman suffered repeated throat infections and her baby was hospitalised with bronchitis, which was suspected to be linked to mould, as she waited weeks for the council to check out her complaint.

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At the council meeting, Cllr Hamilton said steps have been taken to "enhance" staff resources and there will be a change to ensure complaints made through the contact centre can then be put directly onto a schedule for action.

She continued: "The general response to complaints has ranged from initial repairs to leaking roofs, guttering and windows to providing advice and support to people where evidence of condensation is present.

"Hydrometers are left with tenants to monitor moisture levels to encourage them to actively ventilate the property, more when relative humidity is the cause of the condensation, and the service is also testing out some environmental sensors in the worst affected properties to continually monitor air quality and moisture.

"This will further assist tenants with significant condensation issues."