A year on from a huge clean up and environmental workers are back at one of Preston’s filthiest homes.
Neighbours are demanding to know why one of Preston’s filthiest homes has been allowed to deteriorate since a team of Environmental Health officers cleaned up 12 months ago.
The two-day operation, which started on Tuesday, was launched after neighbours complained once again to Preston Council about a build up of flies in the area.
Last year council workers spent three days clearing the downstairs areas, with dozens of wheelie bins filled with waste and faeces, with town hall bosses satisfied it was “cleared to a state that removed the immediate risk and the flies.”
Twelve months on, a team consisting of some of the same workers began to tackle the whole house, including removing hundreds of teddy bears, royal memorabilia, and a bath full of excrement.
This week, a neighbour, who asked not to be named, said: “It’s so frustrating. You have to wonder, why in this day and age, it has been left to get to this stage, and for a second time.”
She added: “Last year the flies were so bad that you couldn’t prepare or eat a meal in your own home, and we’ve all been dreading the warm weather coming again.
“The flies haven’t been as bad this time, but maybe that’s because I’ve gone and bought special plug-in fly killers.
“It’s just such a shame, this is a nice area to live in.”
Another man said: “The residents of Parkside are sick and tired of it.
“The bad weather has brought all the flies out again, it’s absolutely shocking. This is a local nuisance and social services don’t seem to want to do anything about it.”
Environmental health workers were seen using several cans of commercial-grade fly spray inside the house, and had to board up part of the rotten bathroom floor.
Large bags full of dirty teddy bears, many in a Winnie the Pooh style, were stacked on top of one another in the kitchen. Filthy clothes were being thrown into the bin lorry, and windows of the house - covered in dirt and obscured by piles of DVDs - were opened wide, with crime scene-style tape wrapped around them.
Preston Council will foot the bill initially, with an invoice being given to the owners in due course. If they are unable to pay, a charge will be put on the house when it is eventually sold.
The council is able to use two types of legislation in cases like this; one relating to Filthy and Verminous issues and the other relating to Statutory Nuisance.
The Filthy and Verminous legislation is primarily focused on the protection of the public health of those living in the property, which once cleared has an effect on those surrounding the property; whereas the statutory nuisance part relates to the effect on another persons’ enjoyment of their land or property.
Preston Council cabinet member for planning and regulation, Coun John Swindells, said: “It’s not the council’s responsibility to check if houses are clean, but we do answer requests for help and can use relevant legislation, as part of our commitment to public health.
“In this instance, we have had to step in once again to clean up. We have also contacted social services to make them aware of the situation.”