Homeless Voices from Portsmouth

As a follow-up to her investigation into the growing numbers of people sleeping rough on our streets, Holly Wells shares with us her encounters with two of those very people.


Age: ’45.’

Time on the streets: ‘On and off since 2008. 13th September this year is when my landlord kicked me out. I’ve done the sofa surfing but it’s more hassle for me.’

Family: ‘My mum and dad are gone and I’ve got no children. I’ve never been married so it’s just me on my own.’

Job before being homeless: ‘I’ve got a criminal past but I leave that well alone.’

Addictions: ‘I don’t do drugs and I don’t drink. I had my last drink years ago, probably before you were born.’

Nicest thing someone’s done for you since you lost your home: ‘Before Christmas a woman who I met from being on the streets raised a bit of money on Facebook from her friends and family, and paid for me to stay in the Ibis hotel for five nights.’


Age: ’31.’

Time on the streets: ‘On and off for years but four months continuously being on the street this time. I sometimes stay at my mate’s house but he doesn’t finish work till four in the morning so I’m stuck here till he finishes.’

Family: ‘I don’t have any family. Me and my girlfriend split up so she kicked me out to my dad’s. But now he’s died I don’t have anyone any more.’

Job before being homeless: ‘Worked as a labourer on a demolition site.’

Addictions: ‘Yeah I drink a beer here and there and I smoke a bit of weed.’

Nicest thing someone’s done for you since you lost your home: ‘Someone bought my dog Molly loads of food and treats, they didn’t care about me but they cared about her.’