WHAT A MESS: Brian Neill is upset that the next-door property has not been mowed for a very long time and is causing problems for his own property, including rats and mice in his yard.
WHAT A MESS: Brian Neill is upset that the next-door property has not been mowed for a very long time and is causing problems for his own property, including rats and mice in his yard. Allan Reinikka Rokamowing

Rats to this mess, says Brian

DRIVING one into the rough takes on a whole new meaning over Brian Neill's fence.

No it's not golf - but see if you can spot the second car buried in his neighbour's rat-infested, overgrown yard.

Living next door to this Buckle St mess has been a nightmare for Brian for more than two years.

Brian says his constant back-and-forths with Rockhampton Regional Council over the problem has him at his wit's end.

"I have told them (council) about 30 or 40 times," he said.

"I have visited them because I can't hear on the phone, and they are doing nothing."

While many residents will be out in force this weekend with lawnmowers, taking to their fast-growing grass, Brian, 56, who is partly deaf, is not counting on anyone entering the jungle.

Mark Lewis, of Mark Lewis Mowing, said the wet weather had given him more clients and he was mowing about 10 yards a day.

"We have been getting a lot more calls lately. I mowed a yard last Thursday and they want me to come and mow it again already," he said.

Brian, who has lived at the Park Avenue address for three years, said the owner next door had not been home for two years.

"They had chooks in a cage in the yard, and the cage was overgrown with grass and the chook was so small and malnourished, so we have taken care of it ever since," Brian said.

"The grass sticks through the side fence and we have cuts on our arms and legs from trying to get rid of it.

"We came out to the dog barking one night, and shone the light on the tree and there were mice everywhere."

After Rockhampton Regional Council falsely accused Lion Creek Rd resident Pauline Jasperson of having an unsightly and overgrown yard, The Morning Bulletin was swamped with calls of complaints about a number of yards in the Rockhampton and Mt Morgan areas.

A Rockhampton Regional Council spokeswoman said they followed a process after receiving a complaint about a property being unsightly or overgrown.

"The first step of this process is to send the occupant or owner a courtesy letter, informing them that the state of their property has been brought to council's attention and affording them the opportunity to clean up or rectify the problem, if needed, before council officers come to inspect the property," the spokeswoman said.

"Once the property is inspected, if the yard is found to be compliant with local laws, this is the end of the process."

"If the yard is found not to be compliant, a compliance notice may be issued and if the problem is not rectified it may result in a fine being issued."

In relation to the mess next door to Brian, the council was unable to confirm if fines had been issued to the owner. It was also unable to confirm if it would step in and clean up the yard.



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