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The Daily Mail, 15/03/2006

      What is RSS? Cramped: Mick Philpott says he sleeps in a tent in the back garden All Mick Philpott wants is a bigger house. And he‘s very annoyed that his local council won‘t give him one.

His current home – the one he shares with both his wife and his pregnant mistress and several of his 14 children – is too cramped, he says.

When all his offspring visit, the 4'–year– old unemployed baker claims he has to sleep in a tent in the garden.

Look here too... Skip gossip links to more articles News: Mother of 13 on 28k benefits wants more children Report: Twelve kids – but we don‘t want benefits Opinion: When hard working folk feel the benefit Alerts: Sign up for the latest news More: Today‘s top stories Our blogs Editor‘s blog Peter Hitchens Showbiz Sport Travel Money Don‘t miss today Showbiz: Blondie wounds reopen Comment: The vicious thugs set free to murder Sport: Pearce hoping to pay back fans with cup win The council points out that Mr Philpott and his brood already occupy the biggest house it currently has available.

But that cuts little ice with Mr Philpott, who is on benefits. He blames the council for his overcrowding problem and says its failure to allocate him a bigger home is clear proof that Britain is going to the dogs.

"It‘s very cramped already but when everyone is here, there is nowhere to sit," he said at the three–bedroom semi in Allenton, Derby. "I end up sleeping in a tent in the garden and that‘s not on.

"We obviously need a new place but the council won‘t give us one. They always come up with the same excuses, and they‘re just not good enough.

"I used to love my country but I‘m just sick of it now. I‘m really ashamed of what‘s happening. I think this country is going down the pan." Mr Philpott lives with his wife Mairead, 25, the mother of four of his children – Dwayne, seven, Jesse James, six, John, three, and Jack, two.

Also sharing the semi is his mistress Lisa Willis, 22, the mother of Jade Louise, four, Shareen, two, and 11–monthold Katrina.

Miss Willis is expecting Mr Philpott‘s 15th child and also acts as mother to six–year–old Jordan, whom he fathered during another relationship.

Mr Philpott also has six more children – David, 1', Richard, 18, Michaela,
15, Mikey, eight, Aidan, seven, and five–monthold Joshua.

Those six, from another three relationships, live elsewhere – but Mr Philpott claims it is when they visit that the situation proves intolerable.

"What man wouldn‘t want two women?" he said. "I love them both and could never choose between them.

"I‘m just a good father. I love my kids more than anyone and want to see them every weekend. But when they come here it‘s just too much.

"Some people disagree with how I live, but I don‘t care. All that matters is my family, and the fact is we‘re overcrowded and need another bedroom." Mr Philpott, his wife and mistress receive more than 500 a week in benefits between them and pay just 68 to rent their home.

Mr Philpott said he used to run his own bakery, but the business went bankrupt in 1''1. He last worked as a driver, a job he lost last July. He said he had looked for other work, but without success. His wife works 20 hours a week as a hospital domestic.

Because she works more than 16 hours a week, Mr and Mrs Philpott are not eligible for income support but instead qualify for working family and child tax credits.

The couple receive 248.60 in working families tax credit and children‘s tax credit each week and an additional 60 in child benefit for their four children. Out of this money they pay the rent and 12.75 in council tax.

Miss Willis, who does not work, receives a total of 161 income support each week as well as 40 in child benefit.

The whole household receives 24,460.80 each year in a variety of benefits. They would have to earn 2',841 before tax to enjoy a similar lifestyle. Miss Willis actually has her own council house but chooses to live with the rest of the clan, supposedly because her home has been vandalised.

Derby city council said Mr Philpott had only applied for a bigger property less than three weeks ago, on February 24.

Mr Philpott said that he first applied for a house three years ago, but it was not until recently that he realised that he needed to reapply each year.

A council spokesman said the family‘s property, which has three double bedrooms and a spare parlour room, could accommodate up to 16.

The council has a handful of five–bedroom homes which are not available at present, the spokesman said. "As soon as anything larger becomes available we will get in touch." Whatever happens, Mr Philpott‘s overcrowding problems could be about to get worse – the family‘s labrador Goldie is pregnant.

| View all Reader comments (70) 70 people have commented on this story so far. Tell us what you think below!

Here‘s a sample of the latest comments published. You can click view all to read all comments that readers have sent in.

Stories like this one have shocked and infuriated me over the years and are just one reason I am happy to be living abroad. I cannot but sympathise with the reactions of honest, hard working, long suffering UK taxpayers who‘ve commented above. Like them, I am curious to know, if Mr Philpott thinks the UK is so bad, where he thinks he could go to be better off than this. Certainly not Singapore.

Mr Philpott and his like are laughing down their sleeves at the UK taxpayer who has to earn a living, support children and pay a mortgage. He‘s a cynical manipulator who‘s content to make a life working the system so he can live at others‘ expense.

But who‘s really at fault? People like him or the system that makes the Philpotts of the world better off having lots of children and claiming benefits instead of working? He‘s done the math, as they say, and made his decision. He‘ll get his bigger house, as will others like him, until the system is changed. Meanwhile, carry on laughing Mr P!

– Trevor Rymell, Singapore If Mr Philpott expended some of his energy on gainful employment instead of fathering children we, as taxpayers, would not have to fund him and his family.

– Paul Yea, Bristol ,England If Mr Philpott was that worried about his children maybe he should have thought about the consequences before fathering 15 children. Why do we continue to give these people the media space, if he thinks this country is going down the pan do we care? It‘s clear he is lazy and wants the rest of the country to work hard and pay his way. We are lucky to be able to make responsible choices for our own lives in this country, Mr Philpott and the mothers of these children are narrow minded and ungrateful and if they want a better life for themselves and their children then they should go out and work for it like the rest of us!

– Anon, London This story first appeared in the . For more stories like this, buy the Daily Mail every day. Plus, to get the paper delivered to your home click here.