Winter mould warning for Sussex: new research reveals how many hours Brighton residents will spend on the sofa during the cold season

Excess moisture that gets trapped can create the perfect breeding ground for mould (Photo: Steve Robards)
Excess moisture that gets trapped can create the perfect breeding ground for mould (Photo: Steve Robards)

According to Zehnder Group more than seven in ten people in the city (73 per cent) plan to ‘hibernate’ until March.

The study said that from December 1 to February 29 Brighton residents will spend nine hours of their waking day inside and 260 hours sat on the sofa.

A Zehnder Group UK spokesperson said: “Those living in Brighton will drink 143 cups of tea or coffee, enjoy 13 duvet days, snuggle up to 39 movies, and watch 182 episodes of their favourite TV shows. 26 takeaways will be ordered, 18 Sunday roasts will be enjoyed, and people will fiddle with the central heating thermostat a staggering 65 times.

“As many as 82 percent say they avoid going outside during the winter unless they really have to. And people in Brighton will cancel social arrangements, according to the study, if it’s too cold outside (55 percent). In fact, 73 percent say the best thing about the winter is not feeling the pressure to be outside 'doing things' all the time.

“Yet despite hunkering down, as many as 88 percent of people in Brighton feel run down, with sore throats (72 percent experience this during winter), blocked noses (60 percent) and tiredness (59 percent) the most common winter ailments.”

But Zehnder, who commissioned the poll, also warned of the dangers of spending too much time indoors. Visit

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Indoor air quality expert Stuart Smith said that people could create a ‘sick’ environment in their homes. He said: “With people hunkering down to spend nine hours of the waking day indoors this winter, they need to be aware that our basic everyday activity – like making hot drinks, cooking, bathing and drying clothes inside – produces more humidity in the air leading to the risk of condensation, which can cause harmful damp and mould.”

He said: “The average family produces 24 pints of water vapour a day through routine activity but many think opening windows and turning on extract fans, which would help extract the moisture, will make their homes too cold, so don’t.”

Stuart said condensation happens when warm, moist air meets cooler surfaces and is more likely in winter because windows get closed and households turn on heating. Excess moisture that gets trapped can create the perfect breeding ground for mould, which can be toxic.

Stuart’s top tips for keeping your home healthy this winter are:

Refresh the air – open all your windows for as long as is reasonable.

Avoid build-up of CO2 and humidity in bedrooms / living areas.

Invest in ‘moisture-guzzling’ plants plants like Peace Lilies, Snake and Spider plants, Aloe Vera and Boston Ferns.

Keep extract fans turned on.

Maintain a consistent climate, keep a steady temperature throughout the property and avoid drying clothes indoors.

Upgrade home ventilation.

Keep your radiators well maintained.

Catch mould breakouts early. If you see any mould on walls or window frames tackle it as soon as possible.