Rats as big as "Jack Russells" plaguing the streets and houses of Doncaster

Residents of an area of Doncaster have spoken out about the appalling conditions of their streets which are plagued by vermin.

By Stephanie Bateman
Tuesday, 25th May 2021, 11:59 am

The area is Balby and in shocking footage captured by Kathleen Hopwood you can see the size of one of three rats that she found in her garden this week.

And we spoke to a number of residents who are suffering with the infestation, which they say has been happening for over a year.

Huge rats are making life hell for residents of Balby

Kathleen said: “The guy over the road from me came to a blocked soil pipe and found six dead rats up it just now, feel sick.”

Leah Jane said: “Alleys are full of them, that's quite big as well.”

On seeing the rats in one garden, Ash Burton said: “That’s a Jack Russell, not a rat!"

Laura Smith had this to say: “There are rats all over Balby. Streets not being cleaned and it’s only getting worse! Look round Springwell area, Galsworthy estate.”

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Another resident said the situation is the same on Alexandra Road and King Edward Road, adding: “I’ve had none stop trouble with council. Being promised cameras and street cleaners and takes months to get stuff done.

"I have people flytipping constantly at my back gate where sometimes it’s impossible to get my bin out for bin day. I have no access to my garage door either.”

Rachel East has been a resident of Cross Bank for just a couple of months but said she was shocked by the amount of rats that are freely running around day and night.

“I think the amount of rubbish that's dumped in the alleyways Is only fuelling this situation,” she added. “I can see this problem getting out of control.”

Shawn Stevenson continued: “Ilive on Albany and our street is over run with them. My neighbour has had a pest control company out and killed over 20 inside the property as well as outside, there a house further up that had to have a new PVCvc door cos rats have chewed through it and then there’s a garden completely full of rubbish and that’s attracting them but council don’t do anything.”

Doncaster Council’s Director of Economy and Environment, Dan Swaine, said: “Rats are a problem in many areas and need to be cut off at source to stop this problem.

"Simply put, this means that residents have to dispose of their waste responsibly. Do not dump rubbish on the streets/alleyways or in gardens as this is what attracts vermin.

“Everyone in Doncaster has a responsibility to keep our borough clean and tidy and we encourage residents to take pride in their neighbourhoods.

“Our pest control team have received - and responded to – nine reports of rats in the Springwell area since 1 January 2021. We have received no reports of rats on the Galsworthy Estate either.

“We will respond free of charge to all residents in Doncaster that have concerns of rats in their homes or gardens. Customers are required to phone our contact centre or visit our webpage and fill in the online forms to book an appointment with us.”

In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a subscription or buying a paper. We stand together. Liam Hoden, editor.