Blocked Sewers and Drains
Responsibility for the pipes that take waste away from your home depends on whether they are classed as a drain or a sewer.
In Oadby and Wigston, Severn Trent Water is responsible for the public and private sewers, and they can be contacted on 0800 783 4444.
Drains are the responsibility of the property owner. If you are a tenant, the landlord will be liable for faults with your drains. Unfortunately, if the drain is blocked as a result of your own actions then unblocking is your responsibility. For more information about sewer responsibilities, please visit the Severn Trent website.
Most of us like to think that at the end of our lives we shall have a dignified funeral, arranged and attended by people who care for us. Occasionally, however, people die without relatives or next of kin to make these arrangements. The council provides a welfare funeral for anyone who dies or is found dead in its area and for whom it appears there are no suitable funeral arrangements being made. Councils are given this duty under the Public Health (Control of Diseases) Act 1984. In Oadby and Wigston this service is delivered by Environmental Health Officers.
If you’re on a low income and need help to pay for a funeral you’re arranging, you could get a funeral payment. How much you get depends on your circumstances.
Filthy and Verminous Premises
Everybody has a different standard of cleanliness and Environmental Health Officers are not cleanliness police. We become involved if there is a risk to the health of the occupiers, or to neighbours, carers or visitors. We try to address the issue as sensitively and informally as possible but sometimes we have to use legal powers to remove any public health risk. Sometimes we involve other people that can help, such as housing officers or social workers.
Typical situations include:
- Large amounts of food waste
- Large amounts of human or animal waste
- Large amounts of animal fouling
- Blocked toilets
- Pest issues, often from a variety of rodent and insect pests
Reducing Ill Health
Oadby and Wigston Council promotes healthy lifestyles and takes an active role in the Health and Wellbeing Boards. We ensure issues relates to our residents are considered wherever we have a voice and where we have the biggest impact on reducing ill health.
Our council has three priorities for improvements to public health:
- Diabetes is on the increase nationally but by eating more healthily and taking more exercise you can reduce the risks significantly.
- Dementia is a term used to describe various brain disorders that result in loss of brain function causing problems with memory, thinking, language and judgement. Please contact your local GP if you have any concerns.
- Drug and alcohol misuse ruins lives of those with the addiction and others around them. Alcohol is often behind domestic violence and other violent crime too. There is help for people who are ready to deal with their addiction.
Generally speaking, a cremation will be arranged, unless we find evidence that this is contrary to the wishes of the deceased person for personal or religious beliefs.
In order to establish who will be responsible for undertaking the funeral arrangements, the council may undertake a full search of the premises where the deceased person lived. If there is no property to search, for example where the death occurs in a care or nursing home, any personal papers will be carefully examined to discover if there are next of kin to arrange the funeral.
If the relative receives certain benefits, they may be entitled to a one-off payment towards the cost of a funeral. For more information contact your local Jobcentre Plus office (see related links) or Social Security office.
Relatives will need to apply to the Probate Office for a Grant of Probate and Letters of Administration if they wish to access the remainder of the estate. Find out more by contacting the Probate Office and the Treasury Solicitor. Their details can be found at the related links section.
The general rule is that if there are relatives, they should arrange the funeral without the council’s involvement.
However, if it is clear they cannot or will not do this, the council has a duty to make arrangements and recover its costs.
The nearest family member has to sign a disclaimer to acknowledge and agree that the council will collect any funds which become available to offset our costs. This can include the family member being charged by the council for any shortfall.
In this case the council cannot become involved in the undertaking of funeral arrangements unless the executor revokes the will.
If no relatives come forward to arrange a funeral, the law allows the council to enter the deceased'd property and remove any items or assets that may help to pay for the funeral. A careful search may have to be carried out as it is possible important documents may have been stored in unconventional places, for safe keeping.
If the coroner is involved, a coroner’s officer should have previously removed any valuables, money, benefit books and official documents for safekeeping while undertaking their initial investigations into the person’s death.
The council will ensure that the premises are left secure and keys handed to the Coroner’s Office or a police officer. Keys will not be left with neighbours or anyone else.
In either of these cases, the council will not become involved and is not able to refund any expenses that have already been paid or are due to be paid. If you have instructed a funeral director to act, you are responsible for the costs they will charge.
Generally after the funeral costs and administration charges have been deducted, any funds over £500 will be forwarded to the Treasury Solicitor (see related links).
Landlords should not enter or remove any items from the property until the council has completed enquiries. In normal circumstances, this will be undertaken quickly and the keys returned to the property owner as soon as possible. We will keep the landlord fully up to date with our investigation.
Last updated: Friday, 17 November 2017 11:53 am