An amputee has spoken of being “trapped” inside his council flat which has 100 steps and no lift.
Anthony Webster lives at a flat complex in Swansea’s Harrington Place, which he moved into in February, 2019.
But in December, 2019, the 40-year-old former scaffolder developed sepsis in his right foot, something he discovered after visiting hospital following a bout of sickness and intense sweats.
He had to have a number of toes amputated, but as the life-threatening illness kept spreading, he had to have his right leg amputated below the knee.
As a result of his predicament, he is unable to climb or walk down the stairs anymore, and keeps falling over when he tries to. There is no wheelchair access or lift facilities at the flat.
Swansea Council said it had offered him alternative accommodation on a temporary basis which was ground floor accessible, while it came up with a permanent solution, but Mr Webster had not accepted it.
He is purely reliant on the help of his family members, including his young son Brandon Webster, aged 15, and his sister Sarah Webster.
He has to climb 60 steps to get to his flat, and another 15 to get to his maisonette bathroom and bedroom.
Explaining his situation, Mr Webster said: “I cannot climb the stairs on my own, and most days I’m stuck in unless someone comes and helps me out.
“The last thing I want is for other people to have to help me out. I have been sleeping on the sofa because I cannot get up to the bathroom and bedroom. I have tried many times to get down the stairs by myself but I keep falling over. I’m not supposed to be on crutches, I’m supposed to be in a wheelchair. I’m trapped. If there was a fire, I’d burn to death.”
Mr Webster explained he had been in dialogue with Swansea Council to be relocated for more than a year, but was still waiting for somewhere suitable to be found.
“I keep calling the council and talk to the property department and I get told this so-and-so property is available, but it never ends up happening and I’m back to square one,” he explained.
“I just want them to hurry up and move me. It is causing a lot of stress and anxiety.
“At the end of March I am due to get an artificial limb from Morriston Hospital. I used to work as a scaffolder but I cannot do that now so I am on universal credit. I want to find somewhere suitable for my needs so I can get my life back on track.”
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A Swansea Council spokesman said: “We placed Mr Webster in hotel accommodation in November last year, immediately following his discharge from hospital. This was to provide the council with time to prepare one of our accessible temporary properties for Mr Webster until such time that permanent accommodation could be secured for him.
“Mr Webster made a decision not to accept the offer of this property, which would have provided adequate ground floor accessible accommodation suitable for his immediate needs.
“We are continuing to work with the tenant to find suitable alternative accommodation – this includes discussions with the tenant to expand his choice of areas in Swansea so we can increase the options available to him.”