By Monica Gibson

Fed-up residents in a Barrhead street are demanding action after their homes were “invaded” by rats.

Lynn Richardson, who has lived with her two daughters in a council house in Stewart Street for more than a decade, said she has been suffering sleepless nights after unruly rodents moved in.

She told the Barrhead News: “My neighbour, Amanda Roberts, had them first. She had a few in the house and saw them running about the garden. She was horrified.

“When I heard that, I put stuff down to keep the rats away but it didn’t work.

“I could hear scratching and movement up in the loft and I later found out that the poison I had put down had killed one of the rats and it had started to rot.

“The dead rat was taken away but I’ve spotted more of them out the back and I’ve spoken to other neighbours who are complaining about the same thing.”

Lynn said she raised her concerns with East Renfrewshire Council, who agreed to get rid of the rats if she paid for the service.

However, she insists she doesn’t have the cash needed to foot the bill.

Lynn, 41, who suffers from asthma and depression, said: “I’m on benefits and can’t afford to pay this charge.

“Rats are dirty and there just seems to be more and more of them turning up.

“It gets to the stage where you’re scared to live in your own house. It’s a joke.”

A spokeswoman for East Renfrewshire Council confirmed the local authority is aware of the concerns raised by worried tenants.

She said: “We carried out inspections at two properties in the Stewart Street area, although we did not locate any nests or burrows.

“Since then, we have expanded our inspection area to try to identify the location of the burrows. Rats are creatures of habit and will return to the same areas looking for food, which is why it’s so important that, if residents see any on their property, they arrange treatment immediately.

“Our environmental health team will continue to investigate shared and open areas for burrows and the appropriate action will be taken where necessary.

“We recommend that, if residents see rodents in or around their property, they arrange treatment immediately, either through our service by logging onto or by calling 0141 577 3001, or by using a reputable private company.

“Our tenants should contact housing services, who will arrange this for them and can offer support if required.”