A WIGAN grandad suffering from terminal brain cancer is finally able to have a shower for the first time in months after a long-running red tape dispute was untangled.
Following the intervention of the Wigan Evening Post, 64-year-old Alec Wightman has won his battle against planning chiefs to have a portable bathroom - known as a pod - installed at his home on St David’s Crescent, Aspull.
Mr Wightman had been unable to shower or use the toilet since February, after a planning dispute meant council chiefs refused to allow the pod to be installed, despite awarding Mr Wightman funding for it five months ago.
Mr Wightman has been bed-ridden for months on the ground floor of his home and his wife Rosalind, 56, had been forced to wash him as best she can in the family living room every day.
Steve Normington, director of economy at Wigan Council, said: “National planning legislation prescribes the extent to which any extension, including the pod, can protrude beyond the rear elevation of a property and the council has to apply the legislation in a consistent manner.
“In this case the pod protrudes beyond the current permitted amount and consequently requires planning permission.”
However, following an article in the Evening Post, council chiefs have backed down and the pod has at last been installed.
Mrs Wightman said: “It’s just fantastic for Alec to be able to shower. For months we’ve had to manage as best we can and it’s been awful. I tried everything I could, but it was only following the article in the Post that things started happening.”