Stable community! When the Housing Officer visited the flat to investigate allegations of a ” noise nuisance”, not only did he find a donkey in the property, but the tenant had sawn the door to one room in half so that the animal could stick his head out as though it was in a stable!
During an inspection of an empty flat the housing officer discovered that the outgoing tenants had left a Mynah bird in the bedroom! The bird was taken back to the office and the RSPCA was called. Whilst they were waiting, the bird (and you will remember that they are great mimics) was heard to say in a breathless voice:
” Ooh, that’s nice, ooh that’s lovely, do THAT again, PLEASE!”
A letter had been sent to a tenant following a complaint that she was breeding several types of animals, including raccoons, in her flat. The tenant came into the office to see the author of the letter, who hadn’t really believed the allegation but needed to be seen to be responding to the complaint.
The tenant was outraged! “Well for a start they’re not racoons, they’re marmoset monkeys! Just like this one in my hood!” She said as she produced one from her clothing!
As a young Housing Officer, I received a complaint from a tenant that she kept hearing loud animal noises coming from the council house next door. When I visited the property I was amazed to find a fully grown bull in the back garden. What made it even more puzzling was that there was no rear access to the back garden. The tenant explained to me that he had got the bull when it was just a calf and brought it through the house into the back garden. The idea was that it would be a pet for the kids until it was ready to go to market. When I asked how he intended to get it out of the back garden, he suddenly went quiet! We ended up having to have the animal sedated and hoisted over the house with a crane.
Some years ago I worked for Huntingdonshire D.C. and we had received several complaints about a noisy dog. One day the owner of the dog marched into the offices with a portable tape recorder. “I want you to listen to this” he said. He turned the machine on and I waited, and waited and nothing came out. “What is it?” I enquired – his response was priceless “It’s a tape of my dog not barking”.
One of my scheme managers found a distressed customer whose budgie had just died. Being an enterprising sort of officer she tried resuscitating it and failed. She then remembered that George next door was on oxygen so took it round to give it a quick blast. The budgie revived, flapping its wings. This so surprised the scheme manager that she dropped it, which killed it.!!!!!!!! George has been sworn to silence.
Mr Bigglesworth returns. I was working on renovating some houses which had been built before the war and were in desperate need of repair. One of tasks we had to do was to glue together some external cavity walls because otherwise we would have had to have taken down the external layer of the wall. It involved using a rather gluey material that was pumped into the cavity. We did one house where there was an elderly cat sleeping on the window board. Unbeknown to us, as we were pumping this stuff into the wall cavity, some was dripping down onto the cat! Consequently, the cat had to be cut off the window board, taken to the vet and, much to the owner’s alarm, he was returned completely shaved and resembling something from another planet!
Pigeon droppings. A lady came into the housing office very upset and clutching a carrier bag. “My son came out of our tower block and this fell on his head – I demand compensation!” she said. Inside the carrier bag was a dead pigeon that had fallen from the sky. Naturally the son had been surprised, but had not been injured so the tenant was sent away without hope of compensation. The housing manager then passed a note to the housing officer concerned demanding to know what he was doing about pigeon droppings on his part of the estate!
Only fools and horses. Going back to the 1980s, I was doing a rent arrears visit to the 8th floor of a block of flats and I was waiting for the lift. As it arrived, the door opened and a young lad walked out of the lift with a horse! I found out that this horse had been living in a second bedroom in a flat on the seventh floor for quite a long period of time. Luckily, in those days, we weren’t generic housing officers so I was able to pass the task of sorting that one out!
You’re kidding! Some years ago we had a tenant living on the top storey of an eight floor block of flats. This tenant, rather successfully, kept a goat on the flat roof!
One of our housing officers found a budgie on the steps of our offices and she took it home to look after it. She put a notice up and had a number of calls to say it belonged to various people. Taking the budgie to the most credible claimant she opened the cage and asked to tenant to call it, upon which the budgie took immediate flight and landed on the tenant’s head. Confirming, for our officer, that she had found the right owner.
Big Ben. I had received some complaints about a tenant with a “whining dog”. On visiting the offending property, and explaining the reason for my visit, the tenant replied, “Oh no, it’s just Ben”. “Ok,” I said, “but can I just ask what are you doing?” She replied that it was not a guy but an integral part of her act that she does each night. “Come up to the bedroom and meet him,” she offered. I didn’t want to disturb, but she insisted. On entering her bedroom, I was confronted by a Himalayan brown bear in the bedroom – apparently, every night, she did an exotic act with her partner, Ben, the brown bear. I clearly looked bewildered, so she said: “Would you like to see what he does?”. I replied, “No, no the mind boggles, but I’m only here on a housing visit and all I need to know is whether you can stop him whining!”
Helen posted on Facebook today (24th October 2020) – I recall visiting a house in Moseley having entered the property there were some very strange noises, gruntings having proceeded through the hall way it became apparent something was not right, when I asked the tenant what the noise was she showed me their pet hog who lived under the stairs, clearly this put them in an overcrowded position!
The elderly tenant was on the phone complaining about mice in her council flat. “Is it a council mouse?” enquired the housing officer. “How would I know?” asked the tenant. “It will have GREATER LONDON COUNCIL stamped on its back” said the housing officer, “and if it hasn’t then I can assure you it is not the council’s responsibility”. Grateful for the advice the elderly tenant put the phone down.