Like most people, John Connelly never thought he would be homeless.

He had a steady job as a labourer on building sites for 29 years and a home with a partner.

But heart problems and three spells in hospital forced him out of the physical work he was used to. Then a relationship breakdown left him with nowhere to live.

The 53-year-old then found himself at the mercy of a social security system that was alien to him.

His story is a real-life Daniel Blake, from the Ken Loach film about the benefits system.

He was out helping homeless people on the day that figures revealed an increase in homelessness with an extra 400 people in Glasgow applying for help.

The eight per cent increase means that there were around 5700 applications as homeless in the city last year, up from around 5300 the previous year.

Read more: Homeless applications on the rise in Glasgow, new report shows 

Across Scotland there was a total of 36,465 homelessness applications, an increase of 892 (three per cent).

Hundreds of people said they had slept rough before they applied as homeless.

In Glasgow around 400 of those who applied had reported rough sleeping the night before they went looking for help, seven per cent of the total.

In John Connelly’s case, he revealed admiited the uphill battle he faced to even apply for benefits.

He said: “I had to apply for Universal Credit but I had no identification or bank account as I was always paid in cash and handed money to my partner. You need to apply online but I couldn’t work the computer.”

Even once he got the application made, the problems continued.

He said: “I was nine weeks without a penny. I got food and accommodation at the Talbot Centre and they helped with tokens for bus fares to get to appointments.

“I had nothing but I couldn’t beg on the streets. What if someone I used to work with saw me?”

John is still waiting for an appointment with a case worker to try and get him into permanent accommodation and then he hoped to get back to work.

He added: “I want to get back to work but I can’t get a job when I don’t have a home.”

While he is waiting, he has joined other volunteers to hand out food to rough sleepers on the streets of Glasgow.

He said since becoming homeless he has had some mental health issues, but has no drug or alcohol issues.

He said: “I now see a Community Psychiatric Nurse. I read last week about a man who killed himself over benefits problems. I admit it has crossed my mind but I don’t think I could do that.”

Read more: Glasgow has 'lost contact' with hundreds of homeless people 

He said the solution is simple – people need homes.

He said: “I want to see houses. None of this temporary accommodation, that doesn’t work. We’re still homeless at the end of the day, we don’t have a home.”

Across Scotland the demographics of homelessness has not changed much with most homeless applicant single younger white Scottish males.

The most common reasons for becoming homeless was being asked to leave, relationship breakdown or a dispute within the household.

Gordon MacRae, of Shelter Scotland, said “For the fifth year in a row the number of homeless children living in temporary accommodation has risen, up three per cent to 6,795.

“And on 3535 occasions people were denied their legal right to emergency housing by local authorities, being turned away to sleep rough, sofa surf or return to dangerous situations.

“The question every citizen of Scotland must ask ourselves is how much longer are we prepared to tolerate this.”

In Glasgow, a new approach has been followed for dealing with homelessness among people with complex needs.

In Glasgow Housing First has started with 50 tenancies available in a deal with charity Social Bite and housing provider Wheatley Group.

Mhairi Hunter, City Convener for Health and Social Care, said: “Glasgow continues to invest millions in Rapid Re-Housing, including a commitment to the Housing First model.

“The scale of the challenge in the city is exacerbated by the impact of the UK Government’s Universal Credit and welfare reforms, which the UN has noted has had ‘tragic consequences’.”