A COUPLE have told how sewer rats have invaded their home, turning it into a "hell-hole".

Philip Blanchard and Emma Bradley say the animals have got under the floorboards and chewed wiring at the property in Bishop Wilton, near Stamford Bridge, and have also got into their nine-year-old son’s bedroom, forcing him to move into the nursery with his baby brother.

Emma said: “As a family, we are currently sleeping in the living room as the noise scares our nine-year-old when he’s trying to sleep. It’s a hell-hole.”

The couple claim they have not received the help they need from their housing association, Home Group, and they now want to move to a new home.

Emma said they first became aware of the rat problem last November when they heard them squealing under their living room radiator and possibly gnawing in the wall behind their sofa.

“We called the repairs team really late at night as soon as we heard this to see if we could get someone out in an emergency but we were told that the rats were not their problem,” she said.

She said repairs were needed, for example to a rotten floorboard, but they were told that until they had taken care of the infestation, the repairs could not be carried out, and they were advised to ask East Riding of Yorkshire Council for its pest control service to resolve the issue, and the council had been very helpful.

She said they had denied the association access to do the work to date over concerns it wouldn’t do everything needed to make the family safe from the vermin, such as blocking entry points.

She said she and Philip had been told they would need to move out temporarily and felt that the upheaval for two weeks with a child, a baby and a dog would be too much, when the association was only planning to do part of the work that was needed. “We have been left with no other option than to try and seek another property with the help of the council to protect our family.”

A Home Group spokesman said that as soon as it was alerted to the issue at their customer’s home, it arranged a visit. “After visiting, assessing the situation via multiple surveys, and through liaising with the pest control officer at the council, we both set an action plan in place,” he said.

“We concluded that a number of remedial works were needed to be undertaken to resolve the issue. That included some works which were intrusive and needed the customer to move to temporary accommodation.

“To date, the customer has not agreed to the work, nor to move to temporary accommodation. We feel we have been extremely responsive to the needs of the customer and are keen to resolve this issue.”