Banbury residents fear rats are coming from housing development

Kedleston Rise, Banbury, has a rat problem. Brian Billing with his home made bait box. NNL-170606-152129009
Kedleston Rise, Banbury, has a rat problem. Brian Billing with his home made bait box. NNL-170606-152129009

Residents of a street opposite the new Longford Park estate fear an influx of rats in their gardens is caused by the ongoing development.

Brian Billing and his partner Barbara Hammersley say rats are being spotted in Kedleston Rise gardens. Neighbours have found dead rodents in their gardens.

Kedleston Rise, Banbury, has a rat problem. Brian Billing and Barbara Hammersley. NNL-170606-152103009

Kedleston Rise, Banbury, has a rat problem. Brian Billing and Barbara Hammersley. NNL-170606-152103009

“Two of my neighbours have found dead rats in their gardens and one mum insisted the council came to deal with the problem – but she was asked to pay,” said Mr Billing.

“I’ve lived here since 1974 and have never seen a rat. This has happened only since the site clearance and housing development started.”

Mr Billing said he had created his own bait box by cutting a hole at each end of a plastic container in a bid to stop rats colonising the area beneath his garden decking.

He said his partner was becoming too scared of the rodents to go into the couple’s beautifully kept garden.

Kedleston Rise, Banbury, has a rat problem. NNL-170606-152227009

Kedleston Rise, Banbury, has a rat problem. NNL-170606-152227009

The current phase of the Longford Park development, opposite Bankside, is being built by Barratt.

Cherwell District Council spokesman Thomas Slingsby said: “I can confirm that CDC has treated for rats at two premises in the Kedleston Rise area. We put poison bait down and there is a £46 charge for three visits. Officers found no evidence that the development at Longford Park had influenced or aggravated the situation.”

A spokesperson from the consortium of developers at Longford Park said: “As responsible constructors we have ensured that the correct environmental procedures have been followed through all phases of this development, and will continue to do so.”

As rats can carry diseases such as Weil’s Disease (which can be fatal), it is importantto reduce your chances of having them by only putting small amounts of bird food out, making sure there is none left at night and keeping the area tidy under the bird table/feeder.

Cherwell’s advice sheet advises when using a compost bin, to make sure the rats can’t get in by having a lid on the container and by standing it either on a stone slab or wire mesh.