Londoners want ‘killer seagulls’ kicked out of town after woman and dog attacked
Londoners want killer seagulls evicted after a woman and a small dog were attacked on a busy street in Soho. Berwick Street has been plagued by angry seagulls and something must be done to protect residents and animals, locals say.
Westminster City Council has been urged to take action after a woman was attacked on the roof of her home in Kemp House, a large building at the end of the street. Street traders said they saw a series of attacks by seagulls on passers-by and small dogs, and even holes torn from pigeons.
Local shopkeeper Keith, who runs Soho Dairy, claimed the seagulls became aggressive after trying to move a nest at Kemp House. He told the Local Democracy Reporting Service: “It didn’t start well because one of the locals came out and moved the chicks and put them in a flower pot.
“So the seagull thought ‘what the fuck with our chicks’… From then on they got pretty aggressive. Rightly so.”
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Keith’s business partner Robin said the attacks started early in the pandemic when seagulls flocked to the area in search of food. He said: “Seaside Soho is what we called it during the pandemic when you had all the seagulls and outdoor dining.
“They attacked dogs. You see seagulls repeatedly come down and stab a pigeon in the side and kill them. We could do without this piece. I feel for them. It’s not nice to be attacked by seagulls, but some people can provoke them. They have a right to be here.”
Robin showed the Local Democracy Reporting Service a photo he took of a pigeon with a hole in its stomach after a seagull attacked it, but said he didn’t want to share it because it was too awful. The Kemp House attack prompted calls for Westminster City Council to tackle the problem.
The council’s Labor Group said in a bulletin: ‘After a resident of Berwick Street was attacked by a seagull recently, we have asked the Housing Team to investigate the seagull nests at the top of Kemp House .”
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A man who lives in Kemp House, but did not wish to be named, said residents had waited years for a roof garden to be built above the block and it finally opened last spring. And a few weeks later, the attacks began.
He added: “The roof garden was a real asset that the residents had been waiting for for years, but then it was unusable. It was a disaster. We were finally told we could use it. We got it. had for about four weeks, but three babies were there and that was it.”
He said the attacks have subsided since the spring but it is unclear whether the gulls will return this nesting season. The resident added: “The problem is the prospect of what is going to happen this summer. Gulls were attacking people at ground level and they also attacked someone with a small dog. They need something for him. to fix.”
Giles, a Soho resident, who lives near Berwick Street, regularly visited the spot on his lockdown walks and saw seagulls foraging for food. He added: “I can’t see them from where I live, but we can always hear them screaming. There was a problem with them at a fish restaurant nearby. They were descending like hawks.”
Berwick Street is an iconic location in the heart of Soho full of historic pubs and shops. In the 90s it was known as vinyl’s “Golden Mile” and featured on the cover of Oasis’ (What’s The Story) Morning Glory? album, with Kemp House visible in the background.
Westminster City Council has been contacted for comment.
If you live in Soho and have been attacked by a seagull contact our reporter for a story [email protected]