The BBC Radio Sussex Breakfast show was all about the rats in Haywards Heath this morning. Their roving reporter Simon Jenkins was live in Victoria Park. It’s amazing how the council leapt into action as a result.
During the show Simon spoke to a pest control expert who explained that Victoria Park is perfect for rats, what with a plentiful water supply from the splash pad and all the take-away leftovers in the bins. Many local residents called up the show to speak to breakfast show host Neil Pringle about their experiences in the park and an audio package recorded at the weekend in Victoria Park featuring interiews with local residents was also aired.
In a Tweet, Simon Jenkins showed the extent of the litter problem in the park…
— Simon Jenkins (@SussexSimon) August 4, 2014
Later in the show, Pru Moore – cabinet member for leisure and sustainability was interviewed in the park, she made lots of weak excuses.
Highlights of the show can be heard on the Sound Cloud player below:
Trying To Make Sense Of The Council’s Lack Of Action
So, up until this morning, Mid Sussex District Council claimed they’d received no complaints about rats in the children’s play area of Victoria Park. They also said that they’d sent out a rat patrol team and found no evidence of rodents present (How did they know to send people out looking if they knew nothing of a rat issue?)
Apparently the water in the splash pad is checked 4 times a day and there are no issues with it either.
As for the rubbish, Cllr Moore claims they can’t provide a 24/7 litter picking service and that the public should be taking their litter home! If there’s a problem with litter, then why aren’t more bins provided in the summer months if they can’t empty the existing ones promptly enough?
We know that MSDC check the Facebook pages related to the towns in the area. Councillors themselves are on the Haywards Heath Uncovered Page. There can be no excuse for their ignorance and inactivity
As for the council’s own rat patrol failing to find anything, why was a radio reporter able to find burrows within minutes of arriving on the scene whereas the ‘experts’ failed?
On Facebook, local resident Penny Curzon posted the following pictures of rats she saw at Victoria Park over the weekend when she visited with her grandchildren….
Shortly after 12pm today, the BBC Sussex Facebook Page posted the following image…
Closed for maintenance or because the water is carrying diseases?!