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HomeNews13 people found living crammed inside Harrow flat with one toilet

13 people found living crammed inside Harrow flat with one toilet

Ten adults and three children were found living crammed inside a three-bedroom flat in Harrow following an inspection by enforcement officers. Harrow Council were alerted to the property in Rayners Lane earlier this month to discover all the occupants were sharing one bathroom and a tiny kitchen.

The property was uncovered by the council’s enforcement teams during its second ‘week of action’, which took place in Rayners Lane between October 30 and November 3. The local authority joins up with police, trading standards, and London Fire Brigade to tackle issues including fly-tipping, business trading and houses of multiple occupancy (HMOs)

Council officers said a routine inspection on a suspected HMO turned into “a nightmare” when the 13 occupants were discovered sharing the three-bed flat. Their suspicions were first raised about the severely overcrowded property when they found several mattresses lined up on the floor.

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Upon further inspection, officers uncovered a host of other hazards including exposed wires and faulty appliance sockets, which the council claims could “in the worst case scenario cause a fire”. They were also sharing a small kitchen, as well as only one bathroom and toilet. The council’s enforcement team is “taking it up with the landlord”.

Cabinet Member for Highways, Infrastructure and Community Safety, Cllr Anjana Patel, claims the council are “not afraid to take action” against bad landlords and, where necessary, it will take offenders to court.

She said: “Overcrowding is unsafe, unsanitary and exploits people who deserve a decent place to call their home. It’s the job of our enforcement officers to ensure instances like this don’t happen and that tenants are safe.”.

She added: “This is why it is so important that Houses of Multiple Occupancy are licenced and comply with the law. While the majority of our landlords and agents look after their tenants and keep properties safe, there are a few who simply don’t care.”

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