A 96-YEAR old cancer patient says he is “a prisoner in his own home” after being unable to leave the third floor in a sheltered housing block for more than two months.
Wheelchair-bound Laurence McBean has been forced to spend every day in his flat or on the corridor after the lift in Lynton Court, off Wiltshire Way, Hartlepool, broke last year.
Laurence, who is suffering from prostate cancer, has been unable to socialise in the communal lounge on the ground floor – and even missed out on the Christmas party because he couldn’t get down the stairs.
His angry son Brian, 72, said “prisoners get more freedom” than his dad has had in the last two months.
Former plumber Laurence, who moved into the home when it opened around 25 years ago with his wife Vera, who sadly died last year aged 94, said: “I went down to the lounge area for a cup of coffee a couple of months ago and when I went to use the lift to get back upstairs I was told it was broke.
“Workers had to carry me back up to my flat and I haven’t been able to go back downstairs since.”
Laurence, who is a dad-of-two, granddad-of-eight, a great-granddad and a great-great-granddad, added: “I love living here and I have a lot of happy memories, but it gets awfully lonely when you are sat on your own for hours on end.
“At times I feel like a prisoner in my own home.”
Retired industrial worker Brian, who lives in Welldeck Road in Hartlepool, says he has rang Anchor, who run Lynton Court, on a number of occasions and although they keep telling him the lift will be repaired shortly, nothing has been done.
Brian suffers from Parkinson’s Disease, which means he is restricted in how much he can help his dad.
He said: “It’s disgraceful that it has gone on this long.
“My dad has to pay a charge every month and as part of the bill he has to pay for the lift, but it hasn’t worked for more than two months. They keep telling us they need to get the part that needs repairing from abroad, but surely they would have had the part before now.
“I don’t know how long my dad has got left, but what quality of life is this?”
A spokesman for Anchor said: “We’re committed to providing a quality service for our customers and we’re sorry they’ve been inconvenienced.
“The lift at Lynton Court needs a special part which is being custom made in Germany and it will be flown over as soon as possible.
“A stairlift has been put in place as a short term replacement and the Scheme Manager is providing additional support to our customers.
“We are working with our contractors to resolve the issue as soon as we can.”