Warning: Pound Shop is Health Hazard
This page could put you off your lunch
On Saturday around 2.30pm John Theodore Clark started a thread on the W3 website pointing out that one of the shops on the High Street - No 178, previously a pound shop, constituted a public health hazard.
John described what he saw in the shop as being "like something out of "Trainspotting"". Unfortunately for Acton residents, that something was not Ewan McGregor.
He said the place was "swarming with rats, clearly visible running around from the window. There are two beds, complete with duvets and pillows, covered with rat turds and surrounded by empty beer cans and fast food packets."
He pointed out that the rat-infested public health hazard was next to two establishments which serve food: one a Subway sandwich bar and the other an Indian restaurant.
Impressively, Jason Stacey - Leader of Ealing Council - called him just 3 hours later. Following Jason's call, both pest control and environmental health officers were on site on Monday and Tuesday.
We made the journey to went to the High Street on Sunday to see what all the fuss was about. The photographs, particularly one of them, do not make pleasant viewing. This establishment is a new low for Acton High Street.
According to Julia Hunt, who contributed to the discussion thread, the property was inhabited by squatters who were evicted in September.
Jason Stacey told us: "The property in question is not council property and it has been necessary to serve a legal notice on the owner - this has been done and the owner has 48 hours within which to comply and clean up these premises. Other legal measures are in hand but are not appropriate at this moment to comment publicly on."
There are establishments on either side of this hell-hole which serve food and the shop is immediately opposite the George and Dragon pub, beautifully refurbished not so long ago in consultation with English Heritage.
Residents we spoke to said: "We wonder how long we will have to put up with this unhygienic sight on the High Street."
However, Mr Stacey had some reassurance on that front: "The area around the shop in question and both premises either side of this property have been visited by our officers, spoken to and tests carried out. Both were clear of any infestation. This should address some of the concerns raised because of the nature of these neighbouring premises."
The message certainly seems to be that when Jason Stacey gets involved, action will be taken.
January 9, 2008