THEY were dubbed the family from hell after terrorising neighbours with their antisocial behaviour.
Taxpayers have paid for the family of ten to be rehoused repeatedly after they continued to cause problems in the communities where they have been given a fresh start.
Now they are on the verge of being evicted for the fourth time in two years from a house in Southampton after yet more complaints from neighbours and an ever-growing record of police action against them.
Neighbours say numerous incidents of antisocial behaviour have been reported since the family moved into the area at the end of June.
Recent incidents reported to the police include:
- Sauce smeared over cars.
- Bags of dog faeces left on doors and window sills.
- Stones being thrown.
- Excessive noise.
One local resident, who did not want to be named, said: “We have never had anything to do with them but there have been problems since they moved in.
“There have been piles of rubbish left in the alleyway. I know of cars that have been damaged and there has been a lot of noise.”
Police confirmed that they had been called out numerous times to the property.
Insp Sharman Wicks said: “We always take seriously any complaints of crime or antisocial behaviour and will take action to investigate and address it.”
But speaking for the first time, the parents and their eight children have defended their track record, telling the Daily Echo: “We are not that bad really.”
In fact they say it is they who are being victimised, through constant police visits.
They gave their side of the story after arriving at the Daily Echo’s Redbridge offices with all of their children, who were happy to pose for photos before changing their minds and asking not to be identified. It means that we still cannot tell readers who they are because of a pre-existing court order.
The 42-year-old mum said: “We are just a big family with a lot of kids who are just being kids. We are just being constantly harassed by the police for all sorts of things.”
The couple, who live on benefits, say they are now facing a further move, having been given notice to leave their privately rented three-bedroom house.
They first moved to the city in November 2010 when they were thrown out of their rented home in Hedge End after a catalogue of complaints by neighbours.
They lasted just a few months at the property to which they were relocated in Millbrook, Southampton, following further antisocial behaviour reported by beleaguered residents and allegations of threatening behaviour.
The family were moved on to another address in the city in July last year but that tenancy also came to an end after an investigation by the Department for Work and Pensions over alleged false benefit claims.
The family then decided to camp for two weeks, setting up three tents on common land just outside Winchester before they were found accommodation back in Southampton, where they have been for five months.
- AS reported by the Daily Echo, the family were handed £2,500 to fund the move from Millbrook after Southampton City Council said they had a legal duty of care to find the family alternative accommodation if they were being evicted.
Following the latest round of evictions and prospect of further action a spokesman for Southampton City Council confirmed the cost to the public purse had escalated.
A spokesman confirmed that around £4,000 had so far been spent on just deposits for the various moves. She said: “The current position is that the managing agent of their current home is assisting them with finding alternative accommodation.
There is no current financial assistance from the council on offer, however, the difficulty of accessing accommodation of a suitable size may make this course of action necessary.”