A WOMAN who had to flee her home in Chepstow last month after a fire broke out has spoken of how the ordeal is still affecting her mental health.

India Moon's flat in the Cherry Orchard flat complex in the Garden City area of the town bore the brunt of the damage after a fire, thought to have started in a bin, started at just after midnight on Saturday, July 31.

Since then she has been unable to return to her home, and has been placed in emergency accomodation.

But Ms Moon has slammed Monmouthshire County Council for what she sees as their inaction to remedy the situation.

The council has stated necessary repair work is taking longer than anticipated.

"I have been forced out of my flat," she said. "It is not doing my mental health any good whatsoever.

"Monmouthshire Council, I've learnt, are ignorance [sic] and heartless."

Ms Moon says the council were told by "all the professionals who look after me in Abergavenny" not to move her from her home.

"But the council knew better," she said.


She says that, as well as affecting her mental health, the stress has resulted in her seizures becoming worse.

A Monmouthshire County Council spokesperson said: "Ms Moon has had to vacate her accommodation due to fire damage. The damage, as yet, has not been remedied and the council is anticipating that it will take several months to address. In the meantime, it isn’t possible for her to return.

"Ms Moon was provided with emergency accommodation due to the fire.

"Whilst we understand that she would prefer to return to her current accommodation and more importantly secure long-term permanent housing, it wasn’t initially anticipated that the time to address the fire damage of her property would take so long and at present the council has no other accommodation alternatives due to the current unprecedented demand for homeless accommodation."

The council said that Ms Moon is and will continue to receive assistance from an accommodation officer from the Housing Options Team, and "will be pleased to facilitate housing support on request".

However, they said that, at present, "Ms Moon is declining Housing Support, but the council is happy to reinstate".

A Gwent Police spokesperson said: “We received a call regarding a fire in Cherry Orchard Close, Chepstow at around 12.25am on Saturday, July 31, after a bin store attached to a block of flats was reportedly set alight.

“Officers attended, alongside firefighters from the South Wales Fire and Rescue Service, and arrested a 26-year-old man from the Chepstow area was arrested on suspicion of arson. He was later released on conditional bail.

“Enquiries are ongoing and anyone with information, or has CCTV or dashcam footage, which could assist the investigation is asked to call Gwent Police on 101, quoting log reference 2100268522.

“You can also send us a direct message on Facebook or Twitter, or contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 with any details.”