Star readers support Sheffield family in extension ‘nightmare’

Mum Kimberley with son Lewis, 12.
Mum Kimberley with son Lewis, 12.
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Star readers have called for Sheffield Council to take action after a family was left ‘in limbo’ with a half-built extension for their seriously ill son.

Builder David Hatcher, aged 49, said he had been left £8,000 out of pocket because the council had promised to fund the cost of home adaptations for grandson Lewis, 12, but later said payments could not be made to relatives.

Lewis has the muscle-wasting condition duchenne muscular dystrophy, cannot walk, and has to be carried to bed by his parents at their family home in Base Green.

Angela Lane, writing on The Star’s Facebook page, spoke out in support of the family and said the council ‘should pay the cost’.

Maureen Hodkinson said the instruction from a former council employee should be ‘honoured’.

Another reader asked: “Do not all new buildings have to come up to a required standard and be inspected by local building control?

“If the family’s relative builds to that standard, then why can’t the grant be paid to that relative?”

Amanda Jackson added: “I’ve got a disabled child who can’t walk or talk, he has cerebral palsy, and we were carrying him up and downstairs up until the age of 15 when the council decided he needed the extension. It’s a joke.”

The council says the family started work before paperwork was complete, and regulations prevent payment to relatives.

Mr Hatcher said the council had now processed £2,400 to repay work which had been completed by another builder.

He added: “I have now got someone who is willing to do some work, but it’s not that simple, there also needs to be an electrician and a plumber if I am not able to be involved.

“I will still have to fund the work upfront myself.”

Nightmare for disabled boy