I was kicked out of 'rotten' flat in middle of night with 400 others after Bristol tower 'emergency' – now I'm homeless | The Sun

A MAN evacuated from his "rotten" flat in the middle of the night after a "major" incident was declared has been left homeless.

David, 42, is one of around 400 residents forced to leave Barton House in Bristol overnight.

It comes after serious "structural faults" were identified within the tower block, with residents told to "stay with families" while the issue is investigated.

David said his flat had been "leaking" for up to three months before the message came through telling him to leave.

He added: "The only thing I knew is I received a message on Facebook saying there is something wrong in Barton Hill.

"My flat has been bad for two to three months – leaking, leaking leaking, half of the ceiling just came away – literally about a month ago.

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"I’ve been trying to get in touch with the council and leaving messages – nothing. It’s rotten from bottom to top – damp, mould, everybody’s got it.

"This place should have been knocked down years ago. I don’t know what’s going on. I haven’t got a clue.”

Another resident, who asked not to be named, said: "A friend of mine from the other block messaged me and sent me a link to reports.

"Then a guy knocked on our door and said we had to be evacuated by 11pm.

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"It was all a bit of chaos- now we have to travel across Bristol. Thankfully my mum offered to have us. I don't know what's going to happen."

Another evacuee Sheila Barrett, who has lived there for 50 years, said she said she was planning to stay with her grandson in Bedminster

She added: "I've just got to go now and get some clothes and things. I was speaking to a friend of mine in there and she has nowhere to go.

"There's another lady who has her dog and her rabbit, she's really worried about what she's going to do. She can't take her dog into a hotel room."

Around 100 children are estimated to be included within the hundreds of residents evacuated last night.

The serious "structural faults" identified at the building, which contains 98 flats, are understood to relate to fire safety.

Residents were reportedly asked to go to rest centres with a bag of clothes.

People were urged to stay with relatives or friends is possible, while others housed in a temporary rest centre at the Tawfiq Masjid & Centre mosque – where beds, food and drink were made available.

But as residents were told to leave, the community began to rally around.

Mobile caterer Theresa Saunders, 50, grew up in the area and was at the scene providing help.

She said: "I just want to tell people that they are welcome to any of the food I have at the end of the day.

"It must be a terrible upheaval to have to leave your home not knowing when you will be able to go back in.

"I can’t afford to feed thousands but anyone who can’t afford to buy food they are welcome to come and see me and I’ll do what I can."

A statement from Bristol City Council said: "The length of this temporary arrangement is dependent on a further survey of the building, which is being arranged to happen as soon as possible.

"All tenants will be kept regularly informed of progress and any updates on support arrangements."

Council said staff are understood to have had a briefing about the issue on Monday, before the decision to evacuate the following evening.

A spokesman for Avon and Somerset Fire & Rescue Service said: "We have been liaising with Bristol City Council following a recent building survey conducted on Barton House.

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"As a precautionary measure and to allow for further, more in depth surveys, residents in the block are being asked to leave immediately. We are in support of this to ensure that residents are kept safe."

Bristol Mayor Marvin Rees said on X, formerly Twitter: "I'm pleased that the evacuation of residents is underway – we will continue to look after everyone while carrying out a full survey of Barton House The safety of Bristol residents is our highest priority."

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