RESIDENTS are fuming over their nightmare neighbour’s rubbish dump garden which has become a breeding ground to eight-inch super rats.
Rubble, broken fridges, rotting cushions, pieces of glass and discarded items have been piling up over years inside the 30ft problem-garden in Hull, East Yorkshire.
Locals living in a row of terraced homes which backs on to the side of the property say there is nothing to stop the rats – said to be as big as small cats – invading their gardens, scavenging for food.
The residents claim the problem neighbour’s stack of junk is growing steadily next to their properties and stops their kids from playing in their own backyards.
Ellie Burrow, 35, a former Dominos pizza worker who quit to become a full time mum, and her husband, who works for wind turbine giant Siemens, are seething.
She said: “When I saw the rats it put me off playing in the garden. It has been a nightmare.
“We bought a trampoline for the girls before the fence blew down and now I have to tell my eldest she cannot play on her own toy while the rats are about.
“The rats have been coming in during the day as well as on a night time. I would say they are bigger than a rabbit and I would say they are as big as an average cat – quite big.
“He has just laughed about the state of the garden. It is just an on-going battle with him. I have got rats coming into garden where my kids are and that is what bothers me.
“I have had rats three at a time in my garden. Normally, they are nocturnal. But I am seeing them during the day looking for food where all my rabbit shed is.”
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She ended up putting her four-year-old daughter’s rabbits, Raspberry and Cinnamon, up for sale because she was frightened the rats would be attacked.
Ellie, who also has a ten month old daughter, said: “I have complained a few times. It has been on-going for four years.
“He used to have a big fence so no one could see the state of the garden until there was a really big storm that blew the fence down.
“Since then the problem has been getting worse, and worse, and worse. The rats have been coming into the gardens of my neighbours.
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“The council kept saying for four years they would send him a notice and that is all they have been doing.
“Finally, Environmental health have give him until October to get it sorted or the council will go in and clear the garden and bill him for it.
“It is not fair we keep our gardens tidy and we have got rats coming in because of him.”
Environmental health chiefs say they will clear the garden themselves unless the owner takes action.
Neighbours like to drive into their properties when coming home from work or taking their kids to school, but they have to stop and pick up shards of glass spilling out of the garden to avoid puncturing their tyres.
‘IMAGINE HOW MANY RATS’
Another neighbour, Sue Webster, 67, a nurse, who has also complained, said: “I saw the rats as I drove home from my night shift. There were three or four of them – about 8 inches long.
“It was still light in the morning. Ellie dare not let the bairns out any more.
“The state of the garden is dangerous as well. The green house and shed are full to the top with God knows what and are starting to lean.
“There are a couple of freezers out there too – and dog poo.”
She sent photos of the garden to the council a month ago but has heard nothing since.
Ms Webster added: “He has made not attempt to do anything apart from clearing a little bit of the area.
“We have spoken to him nicely. Ellie’s husband even offered to help him clear the garden. I am frightened the rats get under my wooden decking at the back.
“Because of the amount of debris that is there, the bushes and everything else, God knows how many rats are in there
“It is quite a big garden – easily 30ft long. Imagine how many rats are living in it. I am surprised no one has set fire to it.”
At least, four households have complained to the council about it, Ms Webster claimed.
She said: “We have only been living here two years and the garden has been like that since we moved in.”
‘BIT OF A RECULSE’
The house is said to be occupied by a man aged in his late 40s and early 50s who inherited the property from his late father.
Neighbours do not know his name and describe him as being “a bit of a recluse”. There was no reply from the property over the weekend. He has been contacted for comment.
Hull Council said: “We take reports of untidy land very seriously as we understand the environmental impact and its effect on neighbouring properties.
“Our Environmental Enforcement Team is aware of this case and has commenced enforcement proceedings.
“A legal notice has been served requiring clearance of the land. Failure to comply with this notice will result in escalation potentially to prosecution if the required works are not completed in the required timescale.
“The case officer this work is assigned to has been in touch with Mrs Burrow to update her and the report of rats and mice has been referred to our environmental health team.”