Landlord fined over waste in Horden yard that was 'risk to health'

Durham County Council said accumulated waste in the yard was a risk to health. Credit: Durham County Council

A landlord has been fined due to a build up of waste which was considered a risk to health.

The property in Horden, County Durham, was inspected last August following concerns about the state of the rear yard.

Durham County Council said waste materials had accumulated, there was a blocked drain gully and incomplete waste provision to allow for proper drainage, resulting in a risk to health.

There was also a risk of vermin, the council said.

Front Worth Limited, of Pinfold Street, Birmingham was told to pay more than £1,800 after the case was heard in the defendant's absence at Peterlee Magistrates' Court.

The company had failed to respond to a notice under the Prevention of Damage by Pests Act, requiring the owner to carry out works to keep the land and property free from vermin.

A separate response was received by the council from an individual saying the property did not belong to Front Worth Limited who said it had been sold.

However, the company also failed to respond to a notice issued by the council requiring it to state the nature of its interest in the property within 14 days.

The council said it is yet to receive a reply and have not been able to progress the matter.

The case was heard in the defendant's absence at Peterlee Magistrates' Court, where the company was fined £1,100 and ordered to pay £300 costs and a £440 victim surcharge, totalling £1,840.

Owen Cleugh, public protection manager for Durham County Council, said: "All landlords have a duty to follow the necessary guidance and ensure appropriate work is carried out to their properties to help protect the health and safety of tenants and communities.

"While the majority of landlords work with us to ensure this remains the case, we hope this prosecution serves as a warning to the minority who fail to comply with instructions. This behaviour will not be tolerated and we will always take action where necessary."  

The drain was blocked at the property in Horden, County Durham. Credit: Durham County Council

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