'Get us out of this rat infested hell-hole' – Flintshire family's horror at home

Reporter:

Beth Hughes

A mother of six is scared witless by an infestation of rats in her council home.

Greta Salisbury, originally from Buckley, has been living in Meadowbank, Holway, for more than 12 months with her six children, four of whom she said were disabled or have severe medical difficulties.

Parents Greta and Michael Salisbury began noticing strange goings-on in their cupboards shortly before Christmas.

Grandmother Liz Roberts, who is especially concerned about the conditions her family are living in, said rats could be seen running in and out of the kitchen daily.

She said: “This is now an everyday thing. Greta’s afraid to go near the kitchen. She can’t sleep at night because she’s frightened the rats will come into the bedrooms.

“One of her younger daughters has a feeding tube in her stomach and we’re so frightened if the rats scratch her, she’ll get an infection.

“All she can do is sit there while rats run around her. It’s a massive risk for my grandchildren and it’s giving my daughter a hell of a fright.”

Mrs Salisbury said she can’t use the kitchen to store food, making it even harder to feed her children who require a great deal of care and medical attention.

“They’re coming out of the cavities and one has died in there – it stinks,” said the horrified gran.

In a bid to address the problem, Mr Salisbury filled all cavities with foam and set bait around the house with the hope a ratcatcher would come and exterminate the vermin.

But Mrs Roberts said the family are exasperated with the way the infestation has been dealt with.

She said: “When the chap from the council came, he said Michael (Mr Salisbury) had done the right thing. But the rats have chewed away at the foam he laid down in the cupboards, and there are still holes.

“The council have been out twice, but nothing has been done. If Flintshire Council say they’ll get rid of them, that doesn’t eliminate the problem. The rats will just go outside, where the children play. It’s just a dirty place to live.

“The issue is, my family don’t feel safe living there. No way am I going to let them live there any longer.”

Mrs Roberts, and Mr and Mrs Salisbury are waiting desperately for the council to rehouse the family.

Mrs Roberts added: “Greta and Michael are very angry and concerned, and I feel terrible as a grandmother that my family are living there.”

Clare Budden, chief officer for community and enterprise, said: “The housing team is aware of Mr and Mrs Salsibury’s concerns about rats at the property and arranged for an officer from the Pest Control Team to visit the property to assess the situation and take the appropriate action.

“This included the identification of potential nest sites where baited traps could be used to protect the property from vermin.

“We have made contact earlier today with Mr and Mrs Salsibury and arranged for a further inspection of their property tomorrow – following which any necessary remedial action will be taken.

“The housing team will
continue to work with Mr and Mrs Salsibury to ensure that their property is safe and protected from vermin.”

Email:

beth.hughes@nwn.co.uk

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