Bats invade rest home

The surviving bats from the lounge being measured
The surviving bats from the lounge being measured

PENSIONERS have been putting up with some unwanted nocturnal guests lately.

For a colony of bats set itself up in the communal lounge of Leigh sheltered housing.

Up to 14 of the protected little critters were found nesting at Brookdale Court earlier this month forcing many of the activities held there to be cancelled.

Residents at the Pennington Road housing block have had bats in their roof for around 20 years, but until recently their flights had been confined to the under-drawing and the surrounding outdoors.

But somehow the common pipistrelles found their way into the living quarters.

The lounge has, however, now been returned to the residents after an expert from a local bat group visited to put the airborne mammals back in the roof and block up the holes they had entered through.

Bob Adams, 62, said: “The colony has been there for years and seems to have grown. I’ve watched them from my bedroom window, and if you look at the yard at the back for long enough they are flying all round the building. But now some of them have managed to get through the roof into the lounge. People noticed them a couple of weeks ago, it was just two or three at first but then more and more were coming in.

“They don’t bother me, and they’re no harm to anybody, but some of the older residents who go in the lounge to play bingo and dominoes have kept out of there for the last couple of weeks. People either like bats or they don’t. They’ve been left there in the roof and obviously they’ve bred. The conditions are ideal, the building is never cold, there’s lights on which attract moths and other insects, and it’s a good feeding ground.”