Family forced to move out of ‘horrendous’ rat-infested house as mum finds one in the oven

A mum-of-two has moved her family out of their home after it became infested with mice – with the final straw being the discovery of a rat in the oven when she went to cook dinner for her toddlers. The mum, who wished to be named only as Victoria, has been desperately trying to control the rodent infestation since she, her partner and her two three-year-olds moved into the Leicester City Council-owned property in December 2021.

Despite the family’s best efforts, the mice have taken over their home – even leaving them with no furniture after it was all eaten by the relentless tide of furry home invaders. 

She told Leicester Live: “Ever since I moved in, I’ve had mice running around constantly. They were all over my kids beds.

“It has been horrendous. You can’t sleep because of mice nibbling at the door and running around everywhere. My kids can’t run around because they’re just there everywhere.

“We have no furniture. We have nothing in the property because the rats have eaten everything. It’s not fair on my partner to keep having to move the mice when they’ve died. It’s not fair, the fur is making him poorly.”

The last straw for Victoria came when she went to make dinner for her children and discovered a live rat lurking in the oven. 

Describing the awful moment she came face to face with the creature, she said: “When I opened the oven to cook for my kids, it was trying to get out. So I quickly closed the oven and I broke down to my partner and said ‘Can you go check the oven, there’s a rat in it’. He didn’t want to believe it, but it was trapped in there.”

She added that a rat taking up residence in their oven was finally enough to convince the council to move the family into a hotel. 

Victoria said: “The mice and rats are in the block now, they’re running around. They’ve put poison everywhere, but the rats aren’t dying.”

However, a rampant rodent infestation is not the only issue facing the beleagured family as Victoria, who is pregnant with her third child, added that there is also a severe mould problem. 

She said: “I’m an asthmatic, my son is an asthmatic. Around Christmas time, we couldn’t sleep in our bedrooms, so we all had to sleep in one room. The mould is extremely bad, my partner got really, really poorly, he couldn’t breathe. It’s all in my lounge again, it’s just coming back constantly. It’s all behind my toilet in the bathroom.”

While Victoria does not want her family to have to return to the flat, the council initially told her she would need to, but recently said it was working to move her to a new, permanent home.

They are also helping her financially, as she is unable to cook while they are living in a hotel and have been relying on takeaways to feed their children – the costs of which are racking up, she said.

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A Leicester City Council spokesperson said: “We know that this has been an upsetting time for the tenant and we have acted promptly to support her and address her concerns. Following a complaint received in late-December, we have carried out work to treat for an infestation of mice and repaired holes in the property to proof it against vermin. No evidence of rats was found.

“An inspection for damp was also booked, but unfortunately the tenant was not available to let staff into the property at the appointed time. We acted quickly to arrange temporary hotel accommodation from mid-January – at the tenant’s request – and we are also providing additional support from our STAR team.

“A support worker met with the tenant earlier this week and an application for funds to replace damaged furniture was submitted. Unfortunately, no concerns about food were raised by the tenant at this time. However, we are now aware that this is an issue and the family will be moved to half board temporary accommodation this weekend. Supermarket food vouchers have also been provided.

“The only previous complaint we have received from this tenant was in early 2022. An appointment for a damp inspection was arranged but nobody was at home when our staff visited. Our pest control team also made several attempts to get in contact with the tenant to arrange a visit, but had no response. We are now working with the tenant to find alternative housing for her and her family.”