Northampton Chronicle and Echo - Kicking
Kicking up a stink – OAP loses battle over rubbish
A PENSIONER whose huge hoards of rubbish tormented the nostrils of his neighbours for months now has a pristine garden after cleaners removed 3 tons of trash.
Neighbours applauded workers from Enforcement Services Ltd, supervised by Northampton Borough Council officers, as the last of three lorryloads of junk was taken away from Ken Randall's garden in Bowden Road, St James.
The 79-year-old's haul included plastic bags full of rotten food and sour milk, various bits of wood and pallets, an old mattress and about 50 bags of newspapers.
The borough council stepped in yesterday – for the third time – and contracted the specialist firm to give Mr Randall's neighbours' noses a much-needed break.
The operation took four men – dressed in protective paper suits and face masks – three hours to complete.
Nigel Wicks, director of Enforcement Services, said: "This is as bad as I have dealt with in 20 years of doing this sort of thing.
"The worst stuff was the rotten fruit and veg which was just putrid."
A neighbour, who asked not to be named, said: "When I saw the vans pull up and start to take the stuff away I thought 'great, it's finally going to be okay again'. The smell was awful.
"He's a good bloke and I wouldn't wish any harm on him but it had to be done. I hope it lasts this time."
Mr Randall, a former sailor, insisted the "rubbish" was a valuable possession to him and he would keep on collecting in future, despite a borough council warning that the £5,000 clean-up cost would be taken from the proceeds of any future sale of his house.
He said: "You can call anything rubbish; these things are good stuff to me and not trash.
"I will keep putting building materials outside my house, but I can assure you it won't be rubbish."
'Thank you, thank you, thank you!'
A NEIGHBOUR summed up the reaction of those living near Ken Randall as the last lorry-load of rubbish left Bowden Street, St James, yesterday.
She clasped her hands together and said: "Thank you, thank you, thank you."
The show of appreciation came at the end of three hours' work by professional cleaners to remove three tons of rubbish from the 79-year-old's front garden.
The pong was so strong that the reporter and photographer from the Chronicle & Echo were advised by Northampton Borough Council officers to be cautious in our attempts to interview the pensioner.
The whiff was not the only problem. Mr Randall barely paused for breath in his attempts to match the cleaning team's efforts item by item – but in reverse – in scenes reminiscent of a comic film.
We watched as a large length of wood went on the lorry and was carried off again moments later.
When the Chron finally got a word with him, the former sailor was barely still for a moment before darting back into his property to dispute another deduction from his hoard.
But the professional cleaners overcame the amateur collector in the end and left the front plot looking like any normal garden.
With them they took more than 100 bags of rubbish including carrier bags of rotten food, a sodden, torn mattress and a shopping trolley.
The gratitude from the neighbours was unrestrained: "Hallelujah is all I can say," said one man.
"I hope it stays that way now", added another.
Mr Randall, however, has other ideas.
"There'll not be any rubbish, I can assure people that.
"Just more stuff like I had before..."
Ken Randall pictured outside his home before the rubbish was removed
10 January 2007
photo Source: Northampton Chronicle and Echo
Photo Source : Chronicle and Echo