well it's been almost a month since my last post and things are looking much better. Bought a britta water filter jug which filtered the tap water down to a ph of 6 which is great, have been using the filtered water from jug for water changes and the ph has come down to just under 8.
The brown algea seems to have cleared itself since I stopped the 90% water changes.
My Axo is still going strong, I decided the decor I had was not really suitable for him so have had a major redesign in the tank and got 2 small pieces of driftwood and 1 large piece of driftwood and a plastic tree stump with roots - he now has lots of things to climb and hide in.
I also started adding in a few extra species to see how they got on - started with a rock shrimp (2 inch long) and a couple of red claw crabs (small) and 4 small cherry shrimps to give the Axo some live food to keep him occupied. Some would say not the best of species to mix with the Axo however with all the nooks and crannies now created with the driftwood pieces they remain very much separate. I have noticed the rock shrimp and the Axo investigating each other and almost seemed friendly towards each other, now they don't take a blind bit of notice of each other and on many occasions have been face to face without batting an eyelid. 2 of the cherry shrimps still remain but I'm sure they won't be around for long.
A week later I invested in 3 more crabs, 2 red claw and 1 panther crab and another rock shrimp, it's great to see them all scuttering around the driftwood cleaning algea from everything.
Yesterday I decided to go for it and get 2 fish to see how they get on, I went with your advice and got "cichlids" - 2 tiger oscars. So far so good, the Axo is fine with them as they are too big for him to mistake for food, they seem to be thriving in the water so fingers crossed!!!
I was told about the size the tiger oscars can grow to and was questioned about the set up I have for them and it was advised that I didn't get anything else for the tank which is fine by me, I have plenty to look at in the tank now anyway.
So I think it's fair to say my problems are over now, I have my Axo occupying the bottom of the tank along with all the critters hiding amongst the nooks and crannies within the driftwood, and the 2 fish occupying the rest of the tank.
Thanks for all your help, I will continue to post and will update my tank picture with the new setup!