Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Dad Ordered to Pay Tax on Bedroom of Teenage Son Killed by Dangerous Driver ; Council Admits Mistake That Left Grieving Father 'Sick' - but Only after M.E.N. Contacts Leader

Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Dad Ordered to Pay Tax on Bedroom of Teenage Son Killed by Dangerous Driver ; Council Admits Mistake That Left Grieving Father 'Sick' - but Only after M.E.N. Contacts Leader

Article excerpt

THE grieving father of a teenager killed in a horrific head-on crash has been hit by the BEDROOM TAX - on his dead son's empty room.

Motorcyclist Thomas Hodson Fannon, 18, died last October after colliding with quad biker Sam Edge, 20, who was last week jailed for causing death by dangerous driving. His death has left his father Terry Fannon heartbroken - but his pain was made worse after his benefits were slashed because he now had a spare room.

The room at his home in Denton, Tameside, remains untouched following the death of his son.

With Tom's name on the wall and photographs of his beloved son on display, Terry has kept the bedroom just as it was - a shrine to his lost boy. But the sentencing hearing at Manchester Crown Court last week heard how Mr Fannon had been paying bedroom tax on his son's room.

This is despite Department of Work and Pensions rules which say a family should be given a year after a death before bedroom tax is imposed. The tax was imposed in 2013 and means a reduction in housing benefit when a house is 'under-occupied.' .

For Terry, 49, it meant he had to cope with deductions from his benefits at the same time as grieving for his son.

He told the M.E.N.: "They knew my son was dead. I got a letter days after about the bedroom tax. I was in a trance afterwards - I didn't question it for a while.

"I feel sick. The room is still Tom's, I've not changed it. But they said I had an extra room - it is just an extra worry. I can't leave this house, I never can. It was Tom's home and it's all I have left of him."

Julie Fannon, Tom's aunt, added: "It was disgusting - they just don't care, they just want the money. Tom's death is killing my brother, and this was just an extra worry."

The Department for Work and Pensions referred the M.E.N. to Tameside council, who would not comment on what had been heard in court. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.