'Plagued by rubbish, riddled with potholes and used as a car rat-run': Chigwell resident speaks out about 'neglected mews'

Pothole in Brook Mews, Chigwell

Pothole in Brook Mews, Chigwell - Credit: Greg McNeill-Moss

Neighbours in a leafy Chigwell suburb, renowned for celebrity mansions and manicured hedgerows, are fed up with living on a street laden with potholes, rubbish and targeted for antisocial behaviour.

Carrol Natanson, 88, who has lived with her husband Gerald in a flat overlooking Brook Mews since 2003, claims the problems have been getting worse while her complaints are ignored.

A spokesperson from Chigwell Parish Council said it takes all residents' concerns "very seriously", and "endeavours to work with them to ensure the correct authorities are aware of any issues".

Carrol says the narrow mews which runs behind a row of shops on Brook Parade is used as a dumping ground for rubbish and a "rat run" for cars cutting the corner between the B170 and High Road.

Shop owners and residents of Spanbrook and Claremont Place park their cars in the Mews, but Carrol said the road surface is not properly maintained.

“The whole length of the road itself is pitted with potholes,” she said.

Brook Mews, Chigwell

The road in Brook Mews - Credit: Greg McNeill-Moss

The Essex Highways online Track It map shows several issues reported on Brook Mews are scheduled for repair and a spokesperson from the authority encourages residents to report all road defects using the tool. 

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Aside from the road condition, Carrol said waste collection is poorly managed, often leading to overfilled bins, with “stinking” food left for days below her flat window.

On one occasion, she said it was so bad it led to an infestation of flies inside her home.

At night there’s also been an increase in fly-tipping and other nefarious activity, Carrol alleges.

“Soon it will be impossible for us to live here because it will be too dangerous,” she said.

Carrol says her pleas to Chigwell Parish Council and Epping Forest District Council have not yielded results. 

The spokesperson from Chigwell Parish Council said: “We urge residents, not just in Brook Mews but everywhere, to report antisocial activities to Essex police."

They noted the parish operates CCTV cameras in Brook Parade and the top of the alley to Brook Mews, footage from which has been used by the force.  

It has also funded a camera for the soon-to-be launched Chigwell Speed Watch group, and this year's budget also included an amount for a mobile hidden camera to be used at fly-tipping hotspots in Chigwell.

Epping Forest District Council was contacted for comment.