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Mystery smell sparks complaints

It can drive some people wild with ravenous desire, but for one man the smell of burnt toast and coffee is getting right up his nose.
The fug has been hanging in the air outside Tony Jeffrey’s home in Keycol Hill and its origins remain a mystery.
But the retired sales engineer said the aroma is now so strong, he’s wondering if it’s masking something less savoury.
The grandad-of-one said: “I realise that we are not in a smokeless zone, but it’s totally unlike an aromatic smell of say, burning leaves or logs.
“This is distinctive of burnt toast and coffee, but you don’t know what could be contained within that.”
Mr Jeffrey said he first noticed the smell about a year ago.
He claims it crops up “from time to time” and is most prevalent in cold weather and when a light wind “is in a north easterly direction”.
His complaint followed a call to the Sittingbourne News Extra office last Thursday March 21 from a woman who said there was a “horrible smell” in the air around Mill Way - about a mile away from Keycol Hill.
Having had his fill of the suspiciously noxious nosegay, Mr Jeffrey contacted the Environment Agency last week in order to trace its source.
He has his own theory. The 74-year-old thinks whatever materials are being burnt are not lifted into the “high atmosphere” and are therefore pulled down to ground level by cold weather.
He said the pong remains a puzzlement and the Environment Agency has yet to get a whiff of its cause.
A spokesman confirmed it had received complaints about “an odour across a wide area”.
“All the complainants described the smell completely differently,” she said.
“We’ve been out and contacted the sites regulated by the Environment Agency in that area but we couldn’t link the odour to any of those sites.”

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