BY SEAN DELANEY
A couple who say their ground floor flat has been ravaged by “super rats” have revealed their year-long battle to get the council to take action.
Cornel Brown, 45, who lives on the Shore House Estate off the Wandsworth Road, says he reported the infestation more than a year ago to Lambeth council.
The council has put down poison but the rats have continued to grow in size and number, says Cornel.
Cornel said: “We haven’t got any traps and the whole estate is running alive with super rats. The poison is like candyfloss to them.”
Deep burrows have formed in the garden which the rats have used to access the property and gnaw away at skirting boards, clothes and even the sofa bed.
They have also chewed cables and caused damage to Cornel’s £700 stereo system.
Cornel, a food handler, says the problem is beginning to take a toll on his health and that he and his girlfriend are constantly scratching their bodies.
Nicola Thatcher, 39, who lives with Cornel in the ground floor flat said the communal gardens have become littered with rat droppings.
She said: “There is rat faeces all over the gardens. It has got into the AstroTurf and you can smell a foul stench coming from it.”
Cornel attended a local resident’s association meeting to raise his concerns and seek professional help to rid the flats of the rodents.
Lambeth council has since reported the issue to Thames Water, which is responsible for the drains leading to Shore House, and have requested that they provide a solution to the rat problem.
A council spokesman said: “We’re aware of this issue and we’ve been working hard to resolve it since it was brought to our attention. Pest control officers and local councillors inspected the area with residents, and pest control officers also went around the estate to bait all areas.
“Thames Water sent a report to us last month stating that they had found no defects and that no further works were now required.
innacle’s cleaning and grounds maintenance operatives have confirmed that no rats had been seen by the bin area for the last four to five weeks.
“We’ll ensure the affected areas are cleaned thoroughly and checked regularly in the coming months.
Residents have been kept informed of our actions throughout this process and we’ll continue to keep them informed.”
Thames Water has replaced a missing manhole cover and further rat bait was put down by the council this week.
A spokesman for Thames Water said: “Rodents at your property can be particularly unpleasant and we are aware that our sewers can provide the perfect habitat for them to live and move about.
“If a rodent infestation is present in sewers affecting your property we will work in conjunction with the local authorities and the Environment Agency to resolve the issue.”