Home   Thanet   News   Article

Mum placed in Folkestone emergency housing by Thanet District Council 'barricades front door' due to feeling so unsafe

A mum says she has been left with no choice but to barricade herself in her council flat with her young son due to feeling so unsafe.

Laura Jones, who is from Thanet, has been given emergency housing in Folkestone, away from her friends and family, due to there being no vacant council homes on the Isle.

The 33-year-old says despite being grateful to be given a home, she is fearing for her and her son’s safety due to the “terrifying” behaviour from another resident where she lives.

She claims he has held a 12-inch knife to his throat in front of her and her five-year-old boy, that he banged repeatedly on her door one night, and shouts at her, demanding drugs.

“My son is so scared, he keeps talking about a man with a knife,” said Miss Jones.

“He won’t sleep in his own bed, he will only sleep with me in the front room now.

“I’m desperate, I feel so unsafe I have to barricade the door. I’ve tried asking the council for help, but they said they’ve got no vacancies and to try the private sector instead.

“I’m trying but I don’t know what else to do. I feel like I’m letting my son down. I also feel like the council is putting us in danger.”

Miss Jones says she needed emergency housing after her previous relationship broke down and the only place available was in Cheriton, in Folkestone – almost 30 miles away from where she was living in Westgate-on-Sea.

“I’ve been put in emergency housing in a one-bed flat and I’m really grateful for that,” she said.

“But since being here they have housed someone who is a danger and I’ve had to get the police involved.

“I also have no support network here as my mum lives in Ramsgate, so I’m away from my family now.

“It’s having such an impact on us and my son is really scared.”

Laura Jones has been barricading her front door
Laura Jones has been barricading her front door

Miss Jones says she has tried emailing Thanet council and Paramount Independent Property Services, which manages property on behalf of the authority, but is getting nowhere.

In an email response, the council said: “Unfortunately we have no other vacancies that we would be able to move you to at present, but I would urge that you continue to look in the private rented sector.”

A council spokesperson said while they cannot comment on individual circumstances, they always try to provide housing in Thanet where possible.

“During the last 18 months, we have seen an increase in the demand for social housing as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic,” they said. “This has been for a number of reasons including relationship and family breakdowns and also due to increased unemployment rates which have had a significant impact on people being able to retain accommodation.

“We do all that we can to provide appropriate support for people in need and our housing options team has successfully prevented 1,051 households from becoming homeless during this time.

“In situations where emergency accommodation is needed, we always look to provide this within Thanet.

Laura Jones fears for her and her son's safety
Laura Jones fears for her and her son's safety

“There are however some cases that require specific types of accommodation and if that is not available in the local area, we do have to place people further away, in accommodation that is suited to their needs.

“Our aim is to rehouse people in Thanet when there is suitable accommodation available, and moving out of the district is an unavoidable last resort solution in some cases.

“We cannot comment on individual circumstances, but will always continue to support those who require assistance, and liaise with other services and agencies to ensure anyone who is vulnerable gets the assistance they need.”

Close This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.Learn More