Mum who gave birth to twins has nowhere to live after being refused council home

A mum who just gave birth to twins is being refused a house by a city council.

Tanya Gallagher has lived in Cheltenham for just over four years with partner Thomas, while their two sons returned to the city 10 months ago so that the dad could become a full-time carer for his mum, Dawn – who is ill.

Tanya gave birth to twin girls Ruby and Angel on June 19.

But the birth was not straightforward, as Angel was born with a heart condition.

She had to be rushed straight into an incubator at Heartlands Hospital in Birmingham.

She will remain there until she is strong enough for heart surgery.

Despite this, the council is refusing to grant them a council house because they apparently 'cannot prove they have any local connection', Birmingham Live reported.

"The  council  has left us in crisis," said Thomas, 36,  who used to work as a bin man in Cheltenham before leaving work to care for his mum.

"We were both born and raised in Birmingham. I was born in Marston Green and grew up in Weoley Castle and Northfield . Tanya was born in Newtown.

"In August last year, we realised my mum was really ill and I needed to care for her.

"She has a heart condition, blood pressure problems, back problems, hearing loss, anxiety and depression.

"The council knew six months ago that we were having twins and we needed a property."

Their current situation means their boys – Kayden, aged five and Troy, aged three – are being looked after by friends whilst Thomas, Tanya and Ruby stay at Dawn's two bedroom flat in Tyseley .

The couple are making daily visits to  Heartlands Hospital  to see baby Angel.

After Tanya has recovered from her cesarean operation, the boys will return home where they will have to squeeze onto airbeds on their parents' bedroom floor next to Ruby's cot – meaning there will be five in one bedroom.

"Our oldest son has  autism  and is on the special education needs register. He really needs his own room for sensory needs," said Thomas.

"We were told our baby had a heart condition when Tanya was seven months pregnant.

"Even so, nothing could prepare us enough for it when Angel was born."

He added: "We were hoping she could have a shunt fitted but it seems she needs a replacement valve now instead.

"She's a fighter and she's getting stronger every day. The hospital is working miracles for her too.

"This will be on-going and so we need to be close to Birmingham Children's Hospital.

"But we don't seem to be getting any support from the local authority."

The family, who are on  Universal Credit , applied for a Birmingham council house back in September 2018 but were told they had not filled out the form correctly.

Since then, they have sent applications and letters back and forth but keep being told they have not provided sufficient evidence as to their 'local connection.'

"We put in an application for a council house in August 2018 and were told we'd ticked the wrong box on the form so we had to start again," said Thomas.

"We re-sent it then were told we needed to send extra paperwork, which we did.

"Now they have come back telling us the evidence is not sufficient. They have everything, what else can we do?"

He added: "They are saying we need to have worked or lived here for five years.

"I am now a full time carer for my  mum  and Tanya is a full time carer to Kayden.

"I have sent the council my DWP (Department for Work and Pensions) forms that show I am a full time carer but it still isn't enough."

The couple still have a two bedroom council flat in Cheltenham, which they have been told not to give up as to voluntarily make themselves homeless will not help their case.

"We can't live in the Cheltenham flat as I need to care for my mum and we need to be close to Birmingham Children's Hospital," he explained.

"In any case, it's on the third storey and only has two bedrooms.

"It seems a waste that there's probably a family in Cheltenham who really needs that flat and they can't have it because of our situation."

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