PENSIONERS who say they are like prisoners in their own homes because of a landslide are begging the authorities to help them.
Around ten homes in San Pablo de Buceite, near Sotogrande, have been cut off since January because of heavy rain which caused a landslide on a 3 kilometre dirt track.
Despite suffering a stroke a few years ago and describing himself as ‘weak’ on his left side, pensioner Charles Butters says he has to wade through the mud and water to get to the car he leaves on the other side of the track-which is now impassable even by a 4 x 4.
The 71-year-old said: “Unfortunately my pension is simply not enough to live on so I work as an English teacher in Marbella every evening.
“I get my wellies on and struggle through the mud to the other side where I leave my car.
“And then of course at 10pm or sometimes even 11pm at night I have to do the same thing in the dark to get back.”
Mr Butters says that although he can manage to bring back small amounts of shopping he is on the verge of running out of drinking water and is down to his last bottle of gas.
Because of his ill-health he says he also fears an ambulance would not be able to reach him in an emergency.
He added: “I just don’t know what I am going to do. I have been completely blanked out by the authorities; they just do not seem interested in helping us.
“We really are desperate.”
Another expat couple, both in their 70s, live nearby and have two cars.
They use one to drive to the muddy track where they are then forced to walk through the mud to their other car which they leave at the other side.
Many of the families have lived in the small community for more than 20 years but they say the bad rains have made something that was once an inconvenience into an unmanageable predicament.
They are calling for the local council to build a proper road so they can access their homes safely.