Liv­ing in fear of es­tate rats

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - The Next 24 Hours - By ASHA ME­HTA

SHOCKED res­i­dents claim their es­tate is swarm­ing with “rats as big as cats”.

The gi­ant ro­dents have been spot­ted scur­ry­ing in Fel­lowes Gar­dens in Flet­ton, Peter­bor­ough, for the past month leav­ing peo­ple fear­ful to step out of their homes.

Res­i­dents are also concerned about young­sters’ safety af­ter see­ing chil­dren play­ing with the dead ver­min.

They be­lieve the source of the prob­lem is house­hold rub­bish be­ing dumped around the rail­way line at the back of the street but be­lieve the es­tate has suf­fered from years of ne­glect by the lo­cal au­thor­i­ties.

Cross Keys Homes and Peter­bor­ough City Coun­cil have said they have stepped in to erad­i­cate the prob­lem.

Betty Bell (61) has been a res­i­dent on the es­tate for 22 years. She said: “There are rats run­ning round ev­ery­where. Kids are play­ing with rats in buck­ets.

“Bags of house­hold rub­bish have been flung on the rail­way line at the bot­tom of the es­tate and that’s draw­ing them here.

“It has got worse and worse. No­body is giv­ing us a help­ing hand. The place needs clean­ing up. The fences are bro­ken, it needs a play area and the big trees need cut­ting. The rats are the last straw.”

An­other res­i­dent, David Dent, said: “Ev­ery time we go down there, there are rats as big as cats run­ning round. I’ve seen four and five-yearolds chas­ing rats and even kids pick­ing up dead rats. It needs to be sorted out be­fore some­one gets bit­ten. It’s a se­ri­ous prob­lem.”

Grand­fa­ther Alan Clark (62) has lived in the street for 30 years and says it has fallen into de­cline be­fore his eyes.

He said: “There are rats run­ning round, garages are derelict and peo­ple are putting their houses on the mar­ket but can’t sell them.

“They are the size of kit­tens and come from three or four dif­fer­ent ar­eas of the es­tate. The prob­lems here have been go­ing back 10 years but noth­ing is be­ing done. There are trees push­ing up the founda- tions in the mid­dle of the square, it’s like a tip.

“The worst thing for me is I’ve tried to get off the es­tate since my wife died, but I’ve had to take it off the mar­ket be­cause no-one wants to come here.”

At a neigh­bour­hood coun­cil meet­ing on Thurs­day night, Peter­bor­ough city coun­cil leader Marco Cer­este vowed to take ac­tion.

He said: “The rat prob­lem needs to be sorted out straight away. We can’t have rats of that size run­ning around where chil­dren play.”

Neigh­bour­hood man­ager for the area Lisa Em­manuel said the coun­cil would step in and work to­wards a so­lu­tion.

Claire Hig­gins, di­rec­tor of op­er­a­tions at Cross Keys Homes, which owns some of the houses on the es­tate said: “We will con­tinue to work with Peter­bor­ough City Coun­cil and Anglian Wa­ter to iden­tify the prob­lem with the rats and we will as­sist in putting any pre­ven­ta­tive mea­sures in place.

“I would call for all res­i­dents to make sure house­hold waste is dis­posed of cor­rectly to avoid ex­ac­er­bat­ing the ro­dent prob­lem.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.