An empty house in the middle of a Rathnew housing estate has become a dumping ground, leaving residents baffled by its vacant status.
The house, number 25, is part of the council and affordable housing scheme at Drumkay and has been vacant for at least three years.
Now a build-up of illegally dumped rubbish and the overgrown nature of the garden is attracting rats, forcing neighbours of the house to keep their children indoors because of invading vermin.
The premises is one of the affordable houses included in the scheme but no one has yet to actually move into the home. Repeated efforts to get Wicklow County Council to clean up the garden belonging to the house and to repair a number of broken windows have fallen on deaf ears.
According to a spokesperson for the Drumkay Residents Association, 'this premises is causing all sorts of problems for everyone living in the estate. The garden is covered in all kinds of rubbish, including domestic waste, and has started attracting rats. A number of neighbours have seen them running around their back gardens and are afraid to let their children out to play in case they are bitten. The grass is also completely overgrown, and we think the rats are breeding there.'
The spokesperson added that the council have been contacted on a number of occasions, but so far to no avail. A series of broken windows were also reported by parents concerned that some local children may end up cutting themselves if they become curious and wander into the home.
'Its not only dangerous, but also an eye-sore. Its only a matter of time before it starts attracting all kinds of anti-social behaviour,' concluded the Drumkay Residents Association spokesperson.
When contacted by the Wicklow People, the Wicklow County Council housing department acknowledged that their had been difficulties over the sale of the house but said that talks are nearing completion and a sale is likely to take place soon.