LIVING in temporary accommodation can have a 'devastating effect' on homeless families, according to new research.

Oxford Brookes geographer Dr Mel Nowicki has carried out a one year study along with other academics to judge the impact on people's mental and physical health.

The study, published this week in The Geographical Journal, found that being forced to stay in hotels caused significant disruption to a family's daily routine.

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It left them unable to cook, do their laundry, or take their children to school without expensive, time-consuming journeys across the city.

This led to higher expenditures, health implications due to lack of nutrition, and reduced family social time.

The team conducted research with 16 families, who had either been evicted from the private rental sector, suffered a family breakdown, or a combination of the two.

Through semi-structured interviews, respondents reported that the destructive impact on children was particularly acute.

One toddler’s speech hadn’t developed since moving into a hotel, despite her being more than two years old.

Other examples of children’s stunted development included not learning to crawl or walk due to a lack of space.

The longest period a household in this study had lived in a hotel for was three years.