Grenfell residents: 'Our skin has changed colour'

Grenfell residents: 'Our skin has changed colour'

Before and after photos show the dark patch that has developed on Andrea Newton's forehead

Thursday, May 23, 2019

People living near Grenfell tower have told talkRADIO they have experienced cancer complications and breathing difficulties after the fire.

Nearly two years after the blaze one woman claims she and a family member have seen their skin change.

Andrea Newton said: "They had one type of skin that has completely changed to another colour, and a different texture. I have got dark patches and skin tags that weren't there before."

She thought it was a sign of ageing but then read research linking chemicals to changing pigmentation.

On Wednesday the Environmental Audit Committee demanded answers from Kensington and Chelsea Council over evidence of toxic chemicals in homes near the tower.

MPs believe ventilation systems in buildings nearby should have been deep cleaned.

Winston Dowarris, who lived meters from the block, had skin cancer before the fire.

"Afterwards it flared up and my skin began to get certain layers on it", he told talkRADIO. "All over my body and my head." He now suffers from breathing difficulties.

"All kinds of things were coming through the windows and you're coughing in your sleep", he added.

An independent study has warned of "significant environmental contamination" from toxins found in fire debris and soil samples.

Resident Olesea Matcovschi said: "I got asthma symptoms. The GP told me it was exercise-induced but I was doing martial arts before and never had any problems."

Parents are worried their children could develop complications from grass and soil.

Ms Newton added: "It's really scary and a lot of people feel there is going to be a massive cluster of respiratory, skin and blood problems in the community on top of the anxiety and depression."

Kensington and Chelsea Council said: "The Government and Public Health England have assured us that they believe the risk remains low.

"Testing and sampling is underway - we are told that scientists will need time to analyse results and develop a programme that is both comprehensive and gives the community the necessary reassurances."

Read more

Adoption charity forced under after Grenfell cladding discovery

Meet the residents facing bankruptcy over 'Grenfell-style' cladding