Families in a New Addington social housing block have complained that an overflowing bin store is attracting nearby rats and badgers after Croydon Council failed to properly secure it.

One resident has said: “We have to live here. They wouldn’t live like this, why should I have to.”

The bin store, which is not yet meant to be used by residents, has been full since October and is now overspilling onto the floor.

Families who live next to the bins store complain that local vermin and the wind gusts mean rubbish often piles up outside their front doors.

Despite persistent contact with Croydon Council regarding the issue, residents complain that they have not properly addressed the issue after five months of waiting. 

Kelly Billingham is a mother of one who has lived on the ground floor of the housing block on Warbank Crescent in New Addington for the last 12 years.

Billingham, whose property backs onto the bin store, has been fighting for the Council to take action for the last six months but remains disappointed with the lack of progress.

Speaking to the local democracy reporting service (LDRS), Billingham said: “It’s frustrating me now because why do I have to go to these lengths to get someone to clean it up? They wouldn’t live like this, why should I have to? I pay my rent and bills, it’s not fair.”

The bin store was first introduced over a year ago as part of the newly developed housing block that was built behind Billingham’s property on Warbank Crescent.

The brand new flats, built for Croydon Council’s controversial Brick by Brick company, brought a cohort of residents to the area over a year ago. 

While the brand-new stores were meant to serve the new residents, the Council has yet to clear them for official use.

As a result, they padlocked the bin stores to prevent people from using them.

Your Local Guardian: The lock was incorrectly installed on the bin store, meaning people have continue to use it (Credit: Harrison Galliven)The lock was incorrectly installed on the bin store, meaning people have continue to use it (Credit: Harrison Galliven) (Image: Harrison Galliven)

However, this has not been the case for the bin store by Billingham’s address.

While a padlock was placed on the door, it was never locked, leading to the store becoming the preferred dumping site for hoards of unsorted local rubbish.

Understandably, this has frustrated Billigham, who told the LDRS: “They said to me they are going to get a padlock on it and locked it but they’ve locked it open. It’s ridiculous, why didn’t they lock it like the other ones.”

“It’s been a whole year that people have been living in those buildings. They know it’s in this state. It’s infuriating.”

Following persistent complaints from Billingham on behalf of other Warbank Crescent residents, the Council’s waste contractor came to clear the bins in October of last year.

However, according to Billingham they “didn’t finish the job” and it has now got worse.

She told the LDRS: “The bin was partially cleared, but is now overflowing and worse than it was because no one came to put a padlock on it like you said they would, or paint a line for the bin men either so that the bins can be used and accessed.”

“They have to paint a line from the bin store to show the bin men where to take the bins.

"It’s pretty obvious where they have to go, they’re not going to take the bins up the stairs. I don’t understand it.”

When the LDRS visited earlier this month, the bin store remained open with an official Croydon Council notice warning people to use other bins in the area. 

Currently, Warbank Crescent residents are encouraged to use an alternate store on the edge of the block.

Billingham said she has felt ignored by the Council since they last took action, adding that the Council she was communicating with has left her last message on ‘seen’ since October.

The overflowing store has attracted local vermin to the area, who proceed to rummage through the waste and scatter it across the vicinity.

Warbank Crescent sits at the far eastern end of New Addington and backs onto large swathes of countryside.

In the past year, residents have reported seeing rats, field mice, foxes, and badgers near the bin store.

Billingham said: “When the animals come at night time, they get into the stores and drag things out onto the floor near our front doors.”

“The rubbish they take is normally food and shredded paper. I’ve got cans, phone cases, and nappies in my garden now. This is all everybody else’s stuff.”

“When it’s windy, the rubbish blows empty milk cartons, microwave dinners, makeup pads everywhere. “There could be anything in there, it’s disgusting.”

“My neighbours have got children and small grandchildren. If they come out and there’s all sorts of stuff all over the place who knows what could happen.”

Billingham admitted that she has not faced an issue like this in all her time living at Warbank Crescent. She praised her area as a good place to live, but things like this “let it down.”

She told the LDRS: “New Addington is nice, five minutes one way you’re right in the Kent countryside, and 20 minutes on a train the other way and you’re right in town.”

“There’s crime but there’s not as much as in central Croydon. We are at the other end of the tram stop so you would have to be really going out of your way to get here. Once you’re up here you’re done.”

Croydon Council was approached for comment but failed to respond in time for publication.