A Boston pub owner has hit back after pictures and video on social media appeared to show a rat emerging from a pub toilet.
This video footage was apparently shot by a pub worker at The Folly in Market Place, Boston, as he was starting his shift. The worker, who wants to remain anonymous, says he went into the gents loos and saw the rodent crawling up the inside of the cistern.
But the owner of The Folly bar and Kitchen, Matthew Clark said the sighting of the rat was an isolated incident and a council health inspector had given the premises a clean bill of health.
Ex-employee Emma Carpenter slammed the ‘disgusting’ conditions, labeling the toilets as a ‘breeding ground’.
Emma, 32, who now works in another bar in Boston, said: “My colleague was opening up when he went into the gents and saw the rat in the toilet.
“He was horrified, it’s just not the sort of thing you would expect to see. It’s like something from a third world country.
“You can tell from the state of the toilet that it’s riddled with germs."
Following the incident last month, pest controllers were called to the bar where they fitted rodent barriers in the drain.
Matthew Clark, owner of The Folly said: "Despite our weekly pest control checks and ongoing maintenance program, the Folly unfortunately experienced an isolated vermin incident on the morning of 16th February. I can confirm that this has never happened before and we have taken further steps to eradicate it from ever happening again.
"A single pest was found before opening of the site, by cleaners. The company protocol was followed fully, resulting in immediate visit by our pest control contractor that morning. A single vermin was removed from the gentleman’s toilet and a full and thorough inspection by the pest controller followed, with the venue remaining closed throughout. The pest controller inspected every floor and inside rooms both private and public, including underground locked off areas with no regular access.
"He confirmed there to be no droppings, or other indications of rodents of any description, within the venue, other than the single pest already referred to. We received a certificate to confirm the safety of the venue to open, and subsequently did so. In addition to the inspection and removal of pest we installed an upgrade to our foul sewer (which essentially is a one way valve that would prevent rodents from entering the system from neighbouring properties system).
"Following incorrect allegations being made on social media channels on the evening of Sunday 11th March, relating to the aforementioned incident, we took positive action by contacting the local authority environmental team and requesting an urgent visit to site. The Borough attending in the morning of the 12th March, before our regular opening time, with two specialists in this area, and took around two hours to inspect the entire property, including kitchen, underground cellars and external bin stores. They subsequently produced a report confirming there was “no evidence of rodent activity”, that “the company took immediate and appropriate action” and that “all areas clean and tidy at time of visit”, stating a clear no further action position.
"We certainly take all matters of health and safety extremely seriously, backed up by Boston Borough council’s statement and shown by our swift and appropriate action in this matter. Whilst we, nor borough council or pest control contractor have any reason to believe any matter or dereliction of staff or management duty influenced this one off incident, we have increased the regularity of visits by pest control contractor (including visits since the initial problem, where it was again confirmed no activity within the venue). We have also taken the opportunity to obviously refresh the importance of good housekeeping to our local team. I have personally offered to meet concerned customers and show them company records and staff only areas to reassure of the standards being kept at the site."
Andy Fisher, Head of Housing, Health and Community Services at Boston Borough Council, commented: “With the consent of the owner, the Council can confirm that a complaint was received (12 March 2018), about an incident that occurred on 16 February 2018. In line with our standard approach, the Council contacted the owner and met with them on site today. #
“Evidence was presented that shows a pest controller was called out immediately by the owner; the controller removed the rodent and installed additional equipment to prevent any access through the foul drainage system.
“Environmental Health Officers undertook a thorough inspection of the premise and found no evidence of rodent activity anywhere. The Council is satisfied that the owner took swift and appropriate action as soon as the issue was discovered and that there are no pest problems at the premises.”