‘I’m scared of spiders...and discovered a venomous false widow at my house’

Ben Brighton of Lincspest with a False Black Widow spider that was found in Kirton.
Ben Brighton of Lincspest with a False Black Widow spider that was found in Kirton.

A venomous false widow spider has been found outside the home of a Kirton woman who suffers with bad 
arachnophobia.

Clare Kerslake, of Hardwick Estate, knew there was a spider living on the outdoor light overhanging her back door for some time. But it was only when friends at work started talking about the spiders following hysteria in the national press that she started to look a little closer.

“I’ve got really bad arachnophobia so my husband offered to suck the spider up with the hoover and kill it,” said Clare. “But we decided to take a photo of it instead and contacted Lincspest who confirmed it was a false widow. I just thought ‘oh my god’ and was really worried about opening the back door to let the dog out incase it came in the house or jumped down and bit him.”

Lincspest went out to remove the spider and put down insecticide to destroy any egg sacks left behind.

The firm’s Trevor Brighton told The Standard: “A lot of people ring up thinking they have got them in their gardens – but none have turned out to be this spider until now.

“This is the first one we have heard about in Lincolnshire – but I suspect there will be a lot more of them out there than people realise.”

Trevor, who runs the company with his sons Ben and Tom, plan to keep the spider for training purposes.

He added: “The national press has been causing a bit of an alarm over them but people really needn’t worry.”

Experts say the arachnids are not aggressive and only bite in defense, causing a sting and swelling no more harmful than that of a bee or wasp.

Described as ‘Britain’s most venomous spider’, the false widow is believed to have been in the UK for about 100 years, since being brought over on bananas from the Canary Islands. However, they rarely venture as far from the south coast as Lincolnshire.

The only time it would cause a problem would be if someone had a reaction to its bite - but people can have a reaction to lots of things, like bee stings, which can put people in anaphylactic shock.”