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Bungay residents complains of rats

PUBLISHED: 17:36 24 April 2008 | UPDATED: 07:21 01 August 2010

A BUNGAY resident is the latest to contact his MP after a rat got into his home by eating through the floorboards.

Waveney MP Bob Blizzard is to visit the house on Saturday in response to his call for help and to look at the damage caused.

A BUNGAY resident is the latest to contact his MP after a rat got into his home by eating through the floorboards.

Waveney MP Bob Blizzard is to visit the house on Saturday in response to his call for help and to look at the damage caused.

Mr Blizzard has been calling on Waveney District Council to re-instate its rat warden service, which it has stopped, following complaints from residents at Redisham, Beccles and other areas concerned that they cannot afford to pay for private rat catchers.

Mr Blizzard said the Bungay family had had “a terrible experience with a rat that got into their home by eating large holes in their floorboards,” and added: “This is yet another frightening account of the menace that rats cause to people in our local area. My constituent was quite understandably terrified for the safety of his 11 month old baby, who was in the house at the time.

“Luckily, in March my constituent was able to call out the council ratcatcher and was very impressed by the 'prompt and efficient' service. Given the diseases rats can carry, the service may well have saved his baby from a life-threatening illness.”

Yet following Waveney's decision to abolish the pest control service from April 1, from now on people in a similar situation will be forced to stump up the cash themselves for a private ratcatcher. His constituent was ready to praise the service, but was angry when he discovered it has been abolished.

Bob Blizzard added: “This incident just underlines how vital the pest control service is. Without the free service, how will people in the same situation be able to afford to protect themselves and their children from the rats?

“Another of my constituents, Mrs Pickard of Beccles, has already fallen victim to the new policy, having to pay the private ratcatcher £41 before he would even enter her property to remove the rat from her garden. With many people unable to pay out such a sum on a regular basis, it could become impossible to keep the rat population under control, as residents from Redisham village made clear at a public meeting I held in February.

“I am still calling on the council to reverse this disastrous decision, before it is too late.”

Doing away with the service is saving Waveney £60,000 a year and it has said it currently has no plans to re-instate it.

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