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Filthy and verminous premises

We have powers to deal with premises which, because of the lifestyle of the occupant, pose a serious threat to public health or the environment. This would not include premises which are merely unsightly, untidy or in a bad state of repair.

Some people struggle or are unable to look after themselves and their property. There may be a number of reasons why this may happen. There may be underlying mental health problems, drug or alcohol problems, extreme old age, or physical disability. In some cases someone may have relied completely on their partner to carry out domestic tasks and when the partner leaves, passes away or becomes incapable of carrying out the tasks, this may lead to the property becoming dirty and/or untidy. Wherever possible we will try to seek the appropriate help for people through social and mental health services.

The initial approach is always to try to resolve problems by discussion and negotiation with the occupier, private landlord, social landlord and other agencies, although such cases may lead to formal action being taken through service of notice and the carrying out of works in default under the provisions of the Public Health 1936 and/or Environmental Protection Act 1990.

Premises that are unsightly and deemed to be detrimental to the amenity of the neighbourhood can be dealt with under the Town & Country Planning Act 1990 - Section215.