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“We had a horrific smell in the bathroom of a dead rodent which was confirmed by a pest control officer,” said Leanne. The vermin were there in sufficient numbers to have produced enough urine to stain the ceiling of eight-year-old Jamie Meredith’s bedroom below.
Rats were nesting in the insulation so Council workers removed it as well as leaving traps and bait.
Leanne Meredith, her husband Darren and two young children have been sharing their council house with rats, on and off, for ten months.
They first noticed something was wrong in May 2011 when an unpleasant odour filled the house. It was just horrific.” Leanne contacted the council straight away but nearly a week later council workers found an infestation of rats in the family’s attic.
A spokesman said: "We understand how distressing this issue has been for the family and wish to place on record our sincere apologies for this difficult situation.
“Having successfully treated the initial infestation we regret the fact that the problem recurred, but the Council has acted with diligence to investigate and address the problem.
This seemed to do the trick because the tell-tale signs, scratching and bumping from the attic, seemed to go away for six months.But when the insulation was replaced the rats came back and the family and Council has been fighting them ever since although a recent visit from a Pest Control Officer suggested the attic might now be free of rats.The law is very strict when it comes to rats and mice because of the diseases they can spread so all local authorities have a duty to keep their district free of infestation.Caerphilly Council has defended its efforts on Hawthorne Avenue to clear the street of rats and dismissed anecdotal evidence pointing to a prolonged period of infestation.
A family and their neighbours in Hengoed near Caerphilly have been plagued by rats despite the ongoing efforts of their local authority.Some residents of Hawthorne Avenue claim they have been living with the vermin for many years and they are fed up with them.