A FORMER RAF fighter pilot who struggles to walk has been denied a stairlift and is stuck in limbo.

Michael Johnson lives alone in his partner’s home in Southwick.

He was a Queen’s officer and flew fighter jets when he served in the RAF.

Now the 87-year-old has lost full use of his legs and has requested a stairlift from Adur and Worthing councils to help him get up and down stairs.

But despite living in the home with his partner for about 30 years, he is not a registered tenant and is therefore unable to apply for one to be fitted.

He said: “I am 87 and I am wobbly. I am an expensive accident waiting to happen and I am not sure what to do.

“I am living on my own and every time I go up the stairs I have to hold on to the bannister for my dear life.

“It’s a perilous adventure for me on a daily basis.

“I need this stairlift to help me until I can find a care home to move into, which I am trying to do, but the council have said it’s impossible so I am just stuck in limbo.

“I am an ex-fighter pilot and I am supposed to have courage but I seem to be losing it because I am frightened of going up these stairs all the time and I am just stuck.”

Mr Johnson is trying to save money so that he can move into a care home and have the help that he needs.

But he said while he waits for something to come up, he had hoped to have the lift fitted to keep him safe in the meantime.

He said: “I am fine when I am doing what the young people call ‘chilling out’ but sometimes I need to get upstairs and downstairs and I am ever so unstable on my feet.”

He said his partner, who was also his carer, is being cared for in a care home in Shoreham as she recovers from a stroke.

He said: “I am sort of on my own and it’s difficult to arrange things.

“The council claim it can’t be done and it won’t work fitting one to those stairs, but I think they are making excuses.

“I think it would cost a lot less for them to just build in the chairlift rather than there being a high chance of me falling and injuring myself which would most likely cost a lot more.

“I know I need to move out, but I am stuck in limbo with nowhere to go yet and living in a dangerous set-up and I am really not sure what I should do.

“I was told I was immobile, and I was sent a wheelchair but I have no one to push me.

“Sometimes the system really worries me.

“I am just under a lot of stress at the moment and terrified that I am going to have a drastic injury.”

A council spokesman said: “We have been in contact with Mr Johnson.

“He has joined the housing register and has been made an offer of sheltered accommodation. The house in which he is currently lodging has been assessed as unsuitable for his needs.”