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Ashford ranked seventh smelliest town in the UK

A Kent town has been ranked among the top 10 worst smelling in the United Kingdom.

Ashford is seventh on home fragrance company Lifestyle Packaging's list of the worst-smelling places in Britain.

Ashford Borough Council received the seventh highest smell complaints in the last five years. Picture: Paul Amos
Ashford Borough Council received the seventh highest smell complaints in the last five years. Picture: Paul Amos

The home fragrance and diffuser bottle seller found Ashford Borough Council received 846 nuisance smell complaints (calculated per capita) between 2015 and 2019.

The majority of these reports were caused by domestic waste burning or bonfires.

On the other end of the scale, Kent is also home to the second-best-smelling district in the UK - Folkestone and Hythe.

Folkestone and Hythe District Council received just two nuisance smell complaints in five years - both concerning pungent agricultural smells.

Next best was Canterbury, which had the 24th-lowest number of complaints per capita out of 335 local authorities.

Folkestone came second-best in terms of fewest smell complaints
Folkestone came second-best in terms of fewest smell complaints

In 33rd position was Tonbridge and Malling, followed by Gravesham at 42nd.

No Kent area comes close to Ashford, however Dartford ranked at 48th smelliest with Dover at 51st worst for odour complaints.

A full rundown of how all areas of the UK performed is available here.

Ashford residents have got a disadvantage because - along with bonfires - they have been plagued with a long-running odour issue caused by a Southern Water wastewater treatment facility in Kennington.

A 2017 freedom of information request found that about 100 lorries-worth of waste had been brought into the site, with Southern Water admitting to importing human effluvium.

Neighbours have petitioned for years asking that the plant's smells should be addressed - an effort that garnered an apology from the utility company in September 2018.

Residents have long complained about smells emitted from Ashford's wastewater treatment plant
Residents have long complained about smells emitted from Ashford's wastewater treatment plant

Despite this, the campaign continues due to the annual reeking resurgence.

Being given the dubious title of 'Worst smelling place in Britain' is the area covered by Cotswold District Council in Gloucestershire, which received 2,996 nuisance smell complaints (calculated per capita) in five years.

This has largely been put down to pubs and muck spreading.

Lifestyle Packaging notes that the impact of spreading the muck on fields will be lessened by the upcoming Environment Bill 2020, aimed at improving the nation’s air quality.

Read more: All the latest news from Folkestone

Read more: All the latest news from Ashford

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