…By Judah Olanisebee for TDPel Media.
Forced Out of Home: Gary Lambert, a 63-year-old man from Bristol, was evicted from his three-bedroom council house that he had lived in for 45 years.
Despite being offered emergency accommodation, Gary found the shelter to be drug-infested and detrimental to his mental health.
As a result, he decided to return to his former community and set up a one-man tent on the lawn in front of his old house.
Living in a Tent: Gary has been living in the tent for nearly three weeks, cooking meals on a gas stove and receiving support from his neighbors who bring him food and other necessities.
He expressed disappointment that no one from the council has reached out to him, despite his pre-existing health conditions such as diabetes and COPD.
Struggles with Alternative Shelter: After being evicted, Gary was offered shared accommodation in a shelter filled with drugs and disturbances, which took a toll on his well-being.
Feeling depressed and on the verge of a nervous breakdown, he decided to leave the shelter and return to his former neighborhood where he felt more comfortable among familiar faces.
Challenges of Tent Life: While living in the tent, Gary faces difficulties such as poor sleep, dampness, and exposure to the elements.
He has experienced chest infections due to the moist environment, requiring antibiotics and steroids for treatment.
Council Support and Future Housing: Gary has applied for alternative housing through the council’s rehousing app but has not received any updates or visits from council representatives.
He emphasizes his need for a one-bedroom flat due to his health issues and desires to stay in Stockwood, his long-time home.
Council’s Response: Bristol City Council declined to comment on Gary’s specific case but advised individuals facing eviction and homelessness to reach out to the council for support.
The council acknowledges the deepening housing crisis in Bristol and its efforts to provide emergency accommodation and build affordable and social housing units.
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