Disabled Leeds dad living in dining room after wait for alterations

Gary Hanson in his dining room at his home in Bramley.
Gary Hanson in his dining room at his home in Bramley.
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A dad left in a wheelchair after a motorbike accident has been living without an accessible toilet or shower in his Leeds home for four months.

Gary Hanson is confined to the dining room at his property, with a bed and commode.

His wife Pamela has had to arrange for him to have showers in a nearby sheltered housing scheme – otherwise he would be forced to wash using a bowl of water.

Mr Hanson, 46, told the YEP: “It’s been very hard.

“At the moment it’s like I am in a very dark place and I don’t know how to get out.”

The dad-of-two was lucky to survive the accident in January in which he broke his neck and spine.

Mr Hanson, a former decorator, was discharged from a rehabilitation unit in June.

But the couple say they faced problems getting their Bramley home adapted by the council.

A ramp was installed by Leeds West North West Homes on July 26, but there were issues getting Mr Hanson’s wheelchair over the threshold, as Mrs Hanson is paralysed down one side after a stroke and could not manage alone.

She has been helped by daughters Lauren, 17, and Bethany, 18.

“It took visits from 10 men over four or five weeks to sort that out,” Mr Hanson said.

They are now waiting for other adaptations.

The couple were dismayed earlier this month to receive a letter saying the work was low priority and the wait was 220 days – over seven months.

After the Yorkshire Evening Post became involved, it emerged the couple should have received a letter in September saying the stairlift and bathroom installation was high priority, with a 74-day wait.

A spokeswoman for Leeds West North West Homes said: “It is regrettable that Mr Hanson has been waiting for these adaptations for several months, unfortunately work of this scale can take some time to complete.”

She added that discussions about whether the couple wanted to move house had to be concluded before a referral for adaptations could be made.

She continued: “The timescale for this is dictated by the stairlift having to be manufactured to the unique measurements of the property.

“We are estimating this will be completed next month,” she added, saying they would keep the couple informed.

“We apologise if the communications we have sent have caused confusion.”

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