Pensioner 'faces freezing to death' and is surviving on toast as Britain’s cost of living crisis laid bare

4 November 2022, 06:51

Irene needs help to fix her freezing home in Huyton
Irene needs help to fix her freezing home in Huyton. Picture: Social Media

By Asher McShane

A neighbour has issued a rallying cry to help a pensioner who ‘may not survive winter’ living in her dilapidated home and eating only toast after her gas was switched off, a shocking sight that lays bare Britain’s cost of living crisis.

Pictures shared online show the cold home of Irene, in Huyton near Liverpool, which she heats using a tiny electric heater.

She has no hot water and can only eat toast cooked in her toaster, after her gas was shut off. The back door is badly damaged and doesn’t close properly, and there are holes in the walls.

The harrowing images of her home were shared by her neighbour James Anderson, who runs a repair company that works to improve the lives of those living in squalid conditions who cannot afford to maintain their properties.

She heats her entire home with a small electric heater
She heats her entire home with a small electric heater. Picture: Social Media

He is calling for tradesmen in the area to rally round and help make Irene’s home liveable.

He posted online: “She may not survive another winter.”

Picturing the tiny electric heater, he wrote: “This is her only form of heating. He gas has been isolated, leaving her without any form of warmth or hot water.

The charity is calling on tradespeople to come and help fix her house
The charity is calling on tradespeople to come and help fix her house. Picture: Social Media

“Irene needs the help of the community and experts.”

With an image of Irene sat next to a piece of toast, he added: “Jam on toast is nice, but not as a set meal.”

Irene's gas was shut off and it is feared she may not survive the winter
Irene's gas was shut off and it is feared she may not survive the winter. Picture: Social Media

He added: “We need quite a lot of help. We need a door fitter, a kitchen fitter, a carpet fitter, plumbers, gas engineers and someone to provide a skip and help clear out the property.

“We also welcome any donations from people that will help with the project.”

Good Samaritans have already flooded the comments with offers of help. One man said: “James, I don't have money but I used to be a plasterer.

“I wouldn't mind digging out my trowel to help with any work she could have done to improve the house.”

Others offered to donate food and cash to help support Irene and Mr Anderson's charity GoFundme has raised over £150,000 to help those in need.

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