Council tenants have been warned that continued anti-social behaviour could cost them their home.

The leader of Thurrock Council said all action will be taken to “stamp” out anti-social behaviour in the borough after revealing that tenants in three households have been evicted since the beginning of the year.

The council has also sent hundreds of warning letters and taken legal action against eight others.

Councillor Rob Gledhill, leader of Thurrock Council, said: “The vast majority of our tenants are considerate neighbours who take good care of their property and just want to enjoy their homes in peace.

“Unfortunately anti-social behaviour by a few can blight the lives of many of those living near them and masks the true nature of a range of crimes such as vandalism, intimidation and drug dealing.

“We have set aside extra funding to support our housing team and enable them to take action to evict people from their council homes when we know illegal or anti-social activity takes place.

“Thurrock Council has written to hundreds of tenants who were causing problems and taken the ultimate sanction of evicting three households from their council properties since the start of the year.

“This not only removes the troublemakers whose thoughtless actions can blight their neighbours’ lives but also enables us to provide much-needed homes to those on our housing list.”

Under the council’s housing allocation guidelines, people who have been evicted for anti-social behaviour are likely to be disqualified from joining the Housing Waiting List for at least two years.

The council has implemented several other measures to tackle anti-social behaviour, including improving CCTV and security doors, and providing funding to help police track down those that cause motorbike and quad bike nuisance.

They have also provided funding to police initiatives that help tackle gang related issues.

Last month a freedom of information request revealed that incidents of knife crime in Thurrock have doubled in just five years.

MP Jackie Doyle Price warned that a large portion of this crime is fuelled by drugs and users are “propping up very nasty people”. Chief inspector Claire Talbot, who was recently made district commander in the borough, said violent crime and anti-social behaviour are among her top priorities.

Mr Gledhill added: “We take the issue of anti-social and criminal behaviour seriously and will make sure that all action is taken to stamp this behaviour out and support our residents.”