Blockage in neighbouring property causes stream of raw sewage to spew out of Archway family’s toilet

PUBLISHED: 11:54 01 November 2019 | UPDATED: 11:54 01 November 2019

The family had to use bedding and towels to try and stop sewage from running down the stairs. They were unsuccessful.

The family had to use bedding and towels to try and stop sewage from running down the stairs. They were unsuccessful.


A blocked pipe in a neighbouring property left an Archway family fighting back a constant stream of raw sewage that spewed out of their toilet for days.

Bedding and towels were used as blockades against the flow of the dirty water, faeces and urine, but it wasn't enough to stop it pouring down the stairs and into the hallway.

The weekend-ruining incident is believed to have been caused by a toilet getting blocked in a neighbouring property on the Hillside Estate, causing a back surge.

The disgusted mother, who lives in the house with her three young children, said she spent about £50 on cleaning materials and was forced to keep windows open and light incense to cover the stench.

The initial surge began on Friday night, and the council sent someone round to fix it. But it returned with a vengeance the next day.

"It was coming out everywhere - down the hallway, down the stairs," said the woman. "They came out with a plunger but said they couldn't do it because it required a contractor with a jet.

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"I waited until 10.30pm on Saturday night for the contractor, but he didn't have a jet, so left."

It was eventually fixed on Sunday and the council soon replaced the toilet. It has also offered compensation to replace the damaged bedding and towels.

"I thought they'd pay for a proper chemical clean but they've done nothing yet," she added. "They said Dettol should be fine, but with the amount of s**t on the floor I'm worried about germs.

"I've never spent so much on cleaning stuff. I bought six pairs of gloves."

An Islington Council spokesperson said: "We cleared a blocked toilet but unfortunately the blockage returned and required the services of drainage specialists and a tanker.

"We have offered the family compensation to replace damaged bedding and towels, and will undertake works to make good the damage caused by the blockage.

"It is essential that people dispose of nappies and cosmetic wipes in the bin and not in their toilets, as this can lead to blocked sewers and pipes and extremely unpleasant back surges in other people's properties, causing damage and distress.

"We have written to residents on the estate reminding them of this."

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