FED-UP residents in Johnstone have hit out over a rise in illegal fly-tipping near their homes which they believe has led to a rat infestation.

Tenants in Maple Drive blame the problem on derelict gardens across the street from their properties which has now become a dumping ground for fly-tippers.

They believe the rats, which have been seen around gardens and bins for several weeks, have been nesting in a row of empty tenements.

Alan Scobie, who lives in Maple Drive, said residents were now concerned the vermin would soon be living inside their properties.

“The rats are all over the place at the moment and all the neighbours here have been complaining about them,” he told The Gazette.

“My next door neighbour has seen 10 rats in his back garden and another neighbour recently opened her bin and one jumped out at her.

“Eventually the rats are going to get into our properties, which could be fatal for our pets. I lost my dog to a rat once and it was a horrible way to watch a dog die.”

The Gazette: A derelict property in Maple Drive, JohnstoneA derelict property in Maple Drive, Johnstone

Mr Scobie claims rubbish dumped in the gardens outside the abandoned tenements has been left untouched for over four months, despite pleas for action being made by local residents to Renfrewshire Council.

He said: “There are massive hedges in those gardens which are very overgrown, so people can park anywhere up that street, throw things into one of the gardens and nobody is going to see them.

“I would like to see Renfrewshire Council clean the place up and cut the hedges back, so we can call the police if we see someone fly-tipping.

“We’ve done our bit to try and tidy the place up, but we can only do so much. We really need help from the council and it doesn’t seem to be forthcoming.”

Renfrewshire Council has asked residents to report any fly-tipping incidents, along with any evidence they have as to who carried it out.

A spokesperson said: “Fly tipping is illegal, unsightly and harmful to the environment and should not take place at any time.

“Our team will investigate the fly-tipping in this area, arrange for its removal and ensure that any problems with pests are addressed.

“We are working hard to improve our local environment in Renfrewshire, so let’s work together to stop fly-tipping happening in our area.”

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