Residents fear rat invasion on Harry Redknapp’s land

EMPTY The old Savoy site in Southsea.  Picture: Sarah Standing (111996-7715)
EMPTY The old Savoy site in Southsea. Picture: Sarah Standing (111996-7715)
Fly-tipping in Harold Road. Picture: Andrew Pearce

‘Disgusting’ fly-tipping is putting lives at risk, says Southsea trader

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NEIGHBOURS say their lives have been made a misery after rats began breeding on land owned by Harry Redknapp.

Rodents living on building waste which has been dumped at the empty Savoy buildings in Clarendon Road, Southsea, Portsmouth, are rummaging through nearby residents’ bins.

Emma McCormick, who lives with her husband Kevin in a block of flats next door, said she recently found rats jumping out of a refuse bin in an alleyway and 12 dead rodents in another one.

She said the problems began after Joanna’s nightclub, which was part of the Savoy site, burned down last year.

‘The mess has created a perfect habitat for rats,’ Mrs McCormick said.

‘As a result they are venturing into our property and it’s causing huge problems.

‘Life has been made very difficult.’

Mrs McCormick said she knew an elderly lady living

in the basement who was scared because she knows about Weil’s syndrome, a condition passed on by rats’ urine which can lead to blindness.

Portsmouth City Council’s pest control team has put down poison to eradicate the rodents after getting permission from the site’s agent CT McCann.

The council is in discussions with the building firm about removing the waste, but says nothing will be done in the short term because the poison needs time to work.

A council spokesman said: ‘We’ve been advising nearby residents on how to rat-proof their bins and store waste more effectively.

‘The site agent has given us access to the site to put down poison to deal with the rats.

‘The rats seem to be nesting in the site waste and it’s actually best not to remove it just yet.

‘This is because the pest control programme needs to be given time to work.

‘Removing the waste will scatter the rats and make it more difficult to eradicate them.’

As previously reported in The News, Mr Redknapp’s firm, Pierfront Developments is looking to offload the Savoy buildings and Savoy Court, on South Parade in Southsea.