Filthy and Verminous Premises
What is filthy and/or verminous?
Under The Public Health Act 1936 councils have the power to deal with cleansing filthy and/or verminous premises. Filthy & verminous is as described below:
- Filthy - usually means there is rotting food, human or animal excrement inside the property
- Verminous - means the property is infested with pests such as rats, mice, fleas or houseflies or is kept in such a way as to provide harbourage for rats.
Whilst the above act does not cover gardens or other private land the council can take action if there is possible rat harbourage or human or animal excrement outside a property. See Rubbish Accumulations on Private Land for more information.
What can we do?
Our Environmental Health team investigates reports and, if we determine the conditions cause a nuisance or health risk to other people, may serve legal notices requiring owners to clean filthy premises and to destroy any vermin.
If Notices are not complied with the council can employ contractors to carry out the required works to clean the property, remove rubbish and/or destroy the vermin. Where we have to do this we will seek to recover the costs of any work we have to undertake.
What should you do next?
If you are being affected by premises you believe to be filthy and/or verminous you can report it to us by contacting 01424 451079.
To report a property in a poor state of repair which is affecting your property, such as dampness or defective guttering, you should contact our Housing team.
If you are concerned about the person living in the property and want to get help for them or yourself you can contact Adult Social Care at East Sussex County Council.