A 75-year-old blind man from Southend has been forced to give up his valuable guide dog after a Muslim family moved into the house next door. 

Reginald Magu, a Hungarian by birth who has had his trusty pooch Parsons by his side since 1997, told our Chief Reporter that he has now just been left with his white stick for assistance after the Ali family purchased the three-bed home on Fairfax Drive.

He said: ‘The trouble all started in February when they arrived at the house and Parsons wandered over there to say hello.’

‘He had a bit of a cold at the time and sneezed on the father of the family, and all of a sudden he flew into a rage and ordered his five-year-old daughter to go to the convenience store across the road and buy some hand sanitiser.’

‘A few weeks later, we had a letter from Southend Borough Council to say that Parsons was being evicted after a court order was granted.’

‘The paperwork says that he committed a racially-aggravated offence, but in his defence a dandelion in their overgrown front garden tickled his nose so I don’t know what they expected to happen.’

We asked Mr Magu how he has been coping since Parsons was taken into custody.

He said: ‘My white stick with the rubber ball on the end has been so-so.’

‘I’m getting better at feeling for oncoming buses now, and I’ve also figured out a route to Sainsbury’s in town that doesn’t involve crossing any roads.’

A spokesperson for Southend Borough Council told our Newsdesk that Mr Magu had been issued with advice.

He added: ‘Our community outreach officers have been in touch and recommended a pilot scheme involving adult domestic cats.’

‘Trials so far haven’t been too successful but we will persevere. One 6-month-old Tom did pretty well but we had to let him go as he kept getting distracted by the cord on his dressing gown.’

In a statement, father of the family next door Delli said: ‘I have no statement to make.’