PUBLIC health inspectors in East Dorset are calling for residents in a Sixpenny Handley road to tell them if their housing association flats are damp or mouldy.

The action follows complaints from tenant, Raymond Hughes, 70, who claims that laboratory tests found the same moulds growing on his body as those removed from furniture in his Sheasby Close flat.

Synergy housing group, parent firm of East Dorset Housing Association, have recently refurbished Mr Hughes’ flat, installing a new bathroom, and paying for continued heating, but he says it is still damp.

“The average humidity in the flat varies between 60 and 70 per cent, but gets as high as 80 or 90 per cent in the bathroom, kitchen, and in front of the hall cupboard. There is water under the carpet on the hall floor.

“The kitchen floor and the wall behind the cupboards are wet. After two weeks of all heating on, my flat is just as damp.

“My problem is that the mould spores in my skin love the warm damp and thrive,” he said.

Now Barry Dike, private sector housing manager at East Dorset District Council, has told Mr Hughes that other tenants in Sheasby Close will be contacted to assess their flats.

In a letter he said: “We will be carrying out a postal survey of the residents of flats within the close to try and identify the extent to which residents are suffering from damp and mould problems.

“We will then be inspecting as many of those flats as possible to identify any common themes and whether they relate to the lifestyle of the occupants or to structural/design issues.”

His report found rising damp at Mr Hughes’ front door, and moisture at a wall dividing the kitchen from the bathroom but said that damp levels assessed under the Housing Act rating system did not present a hazard.

Synergy spokesperson, Kelly Churchill, said the company welcomed the opportunity to work with EDDC to determine if there were underlying issues with damp in Sheasby Close.

“Following the remedial works in Mr Hughes flat, three other residents have asked us to undertake damp surveys in their flats, which we have arranged to do,” she said.

The company stressed that they consulted Mr Hughes at all times and were committed to resolving issues with his flat.