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TRAPPED FOR 16YRS IN ESTATE FROM HELL; Misery of family stuck on Neds slum scheme.

Byline: Donna Watson

A FAMILY are being forced to live in a squalid block of flats used for 1970s slum scenes in the hit film Neds.

Kirsteen and Thomas Smillie first applied to their local council for a move from their dilapidated scheme 16 years ago.

Their home is earmarked for demolition and only five of the 100-plus flats on the Mountblow scheme in Clydebank, near Glasgow, are occupied.

The Peter Mullan movie has been lauded for its portrayal of 1970s gang culture but the Smillies' misery is all too real today.

Kirsteen, 36, said: "It goes to show how bad this place is when movie producers saw fit to use it to represent a place that was rundown 40 years ago.

"We went to see the film when it came out and you could see people were shocked by the setting.

"But for us, that is real life so it's no wonder we're desperate to move out."

Kirsteen - who lives with sons Dale, 18, Declan, 15, and Dean, 10 - said abandoned flats are being used as doss-houses by drunks and thugs.

She said: "They're setting fires, urinating and getting up to all sorts.

"The streetlights don't work and we can't even let Dean out to play."

A West Dunbartonshire Council spokeswoman said: "This family are well placed for an offer of housing in their preferred areas but unfortunately there is nothing available."

CAPTION(S):

DIRECTOR: Mullan NO-GO: The Smillies are alone in their block
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Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Feb 14, 2011
Words:245
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