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22nd November 2023

Students in halls restricted from drying clothes in their flats

Concerns include the fire risk of clothes driers which obstruct passageways and the risk of mould increased by moisture and poor air circulation
Students in halls restricted from drying clothes in their flats

The University has banned students living in halls from drying clothes in their flats.

A University email told students that clothes frames, dryers, and airers found in kitchens and corridors will now be “removed by the domestic team.”

The email stated that “whilst carrying out safety checks within bedrooms,” clothes dryers and airers were found.

The email “strongly advises” students not to dry clothes in their bedrooms, as the wet clothes increase humidity, thereby leaving the room more susceptible to mould. Drying racks, it claims, also could obstruct fire exits.

Instead, the University recommended that students use launderette facilities owned by Circuit, which are “available at competitive prices.”

It costs approximately £3 to use the washing machine and £1.50 to use the tumble dryer in University facilities, although this can vary between locations. In Unsworth Park, Fallowfield, there are 32 machines for 1,100 students.

However, Olivia, a first-year student living in Oak House, said that “three maybe four” of the washing machines and “only about three” of the dryers in her accommodation work.

Olivia said that her friend “dried her clothes three times in the dryer and they were still damp”, costing £4.50 and leaving her with “no choice” but to use a drying rack in her flat.

Students who may “have contributed to damage” in their accommodation are liable to be charged by the Facilities team for the “undertaking of remedial repairs.”

Guidance published by the Department of Health and Social Care and the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, addresses the risks of mould following the death of two-year-old Awaab Ishak in 2020.

The guidance states that “tenants should not be blamed for damp and mould. Damp and mould in the home are not the result of ‘lifestyle choices’, and it is the responsibility of landlords to identify and address the underlying causes of the problem, such as structural issues or inadequate ventilation.”

Alexandra Baynes

Alexandra Baynes

Head Editor of Opinion Section. Radio Host on Fuse FM. Twitter: @lexiebayness

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