‘Rubbish higher than roofs of garages’: Croydon plagued by rats and fly-tipping

By Tara O’Connor, Local Democracy Reporter

Huge piles of rubbish, including nine fridges, sofas and building rubble, have attracted mice and rats to the back of a block of flats in Selhurst.

Rats can even be seen running along garage roofs from trains passing the dump.

Residents claim people pull up to their cul-de-sac and dump car loads of junk on a regular basis.

Some of the mounds of rubbish are as tall as the garages at the back of flats in Holmesdale Road, which sits next to the train tracks between Selhurst and Thornton Heath.

Fridges and sofas dumped outside garages in Holmesdale Road (Picture: Tara O’Connor)

Alan Gaunt, who lives in Selhurst, spotted the mess when he was on the train towards Thornton Heath. He said he has since complained to Croydon council and to his MP, but is yet to hear back.

He said: “I was shocked by the amount of rubbish that was stacked up. There’s two rows of garages which are separated by a mountain of rubbish that is higher than the roofs of the garages and you could see the rats gambolling about on the flat roof of the garages.

“Something needs to be done about it because people should have pride in the area. It’s obviously been there for some time and is way beyond calling the council to come and move a bag of rubbish.”

David Obuamah, 21, said there is so much rubbish it means many residents can’t even access their garages anymore.

He said: “It has definitely been like that for more than a year, we can’t get into our garages. I think quite a few people have complained to the council.”

At a Croydon council meeting on Monday, the borough’s mayor Jason Perry pledged to “clean up the borough”.

He said: “At the moment there is a sense that no one cares and I know that we as Croydonians do care about our borough but we’ve got to a point where people feel they can do as they please because the streets are dirty and the place looks unloved.”

A spokesperson for Croydon Council said: “We apologise for the impact this has had on residents and have instructed the site to be cleared as a priority. All rubbish will be removed by the end of next week and council teams are working on measures to prevent further dumping.

“Fly-tipping is a criminal offence and tackling and deterring this across the borough is a key priority for our Mayor. Residents are strongly encouraged to report illegal dumping for the council’s attention via our Love Clean Streets App.”

Pictured top: Rubbish outside garages in Holmesdale Road (Picture: Tara O’Connor)




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