Man forced to live with ‘stench of death’ as rats rot in walls of rented flat

A man says he was forced to live with the “stench of death” as rats rotted in the walls of his rented flat.

Rory Baird and his four flatmates set up traps to catch the rodents after spotting them running across the kitchen floor and even making it upstairs to the living room.

After they figured out the traps and started avoiding them, Rory resorted to his landlord’s suggestion of starving the rats by blocking entry points.

But this led to a “plague of flies” descending on the home in Headingley, West Yorkshire, as the rats decayed and left behind a foul stench.

Rory told Leeds Live : “The smell was atrocious – pardon my graphic description but it was genuinely the stench of death.”

He encountered the rat problem from the very first day he moved in with friends.

Rory said: “I told the landlord and we set some traps, although they were only mouse traps so didn’t kill the animal.

“I had to kill one myself. I have a video of a second one with its leg caught in the trap, but it got away in the removal process.

“The landlord’s original suggestion was to block up the entry points using iron wool and some plaster.

“I originally said no, we should use traps, because this is better than having dead rats decaying in the wall cavities.”

He was forced to revert to the plan, however, and his prediction came true.

Rory continued: “Once they figured out the traps, we had to resort to his original plan – blocking up the walls. It had the predicted effect.

“The kitchen absolutely stank, and a plague of flies descended upon it. The problem eventually cleared itself up, but it was a gross couple of weeks.”

The stink problem reached its climax when Rory and his friends became so frustrated at the lack of support that they used dead flies to form a “help” sign.

He said: “At the end of the day it just didn’t get sorted quickly enough.

“The help sign was probably a combination of an abundance of flies, a mild sense of humour, and a genuine plea for aid.

“Honestly, there were so many flies I think we could have used them to write out a formal complaint to the environmental health department.”