Grieving daughter "very upset" after Derby City Council say she has to leave family home in Chaddesden after death of parents
A DAUGHTER grieving for her parents who she lived with her whole life has told of her despair at being forced out of the family home.
Christine Wright's father Terry died of cancer in October last year and her mother, June, died of pneumonia just before Christmas.
Miss Wright's brother Colin moved into the home in Lathkill Road, Chaddesden, to help his sister out.
But she said that, last week, Derby Homes – the city council's social housing arm – wrote to her telling them that they would have to move out.
The organisation said the move had to be made as the law meant they had no right to stay in the home and are not eligible to stay in a three-bedroom family house.
Miss Wright, 44, said it was "very upsetting" at a time when she was still grieving for her parents.
The part-time cleaner said: "My brother has his young children here three nights a week and it still feels very much like the family home. We are looking for somewhere else to live, hopefully together to save money.
"But we have three dogs and a cockatiel so its difficult to find somewhere private."
Maria Murphy, Derby Homes director of housing and customer services, said the pair were registered on the housing waiting list but the siblings deny this has been possible.
Mrs Murphy said the law had been in place since 1985.
It means that people have the right to stay in a property if a spouse, civil partner, or sometimes a parent dies.
But a house, by law, can only be passed on once to a family member.
This meant that when the Wrights' father died, the home was passed onto their mother – but it now cannot be passed on to another family member, despite the two deaths being so close together.
Mrs Murphy said the law was there both to give people the security that they wouldn't simply be moved on because family members had died and to "help local authorities make the best use of their housing stock".
She added that Miss Wright would receive support from Derby Homes to find a smaller property in the city.
Maureen Davis, Derby Homes housing operations manager, said succession issues were "always difficult to deal with".
She said: "When their father died, mum succeeded.
"By law there can be no further succession.
"In circumstances such as these, we will support any remaining occupants to move to more appropriate accommodation.
"If the occupant fails to comply then we, Derby Homes, will reluctantly take legal action."
She said Mr Wright, 43, had not been continuously living at the property and was receiving advice from the city council.