Neighbours rejoice as 'Britain's worst family' are all banged up for Christmas

Even Mum is behind bars

Updated: 

Lee, Jason and Darren Sellwood

A real-life Shameless family will spend Christmas behind bars ­after three brothers and their mum were all locked up.

Last night neighbours were rejoicing at the prospect of a festive season free from the notorious Selwood clan.

The heavily-tattooed lager-swilling family, who have a sackful of previous convictions, have been likened to the lawless Gallaghers in Channel 4 drama Shameless.

Even the Selwood mob's relatives are ecstatic they will be out of the way for Christmas.

The family from hell's auntie, Teresa Cole, 51, told the Sunday People: "They are feral scumbags, scum of the earth. I hate them with a passion. They are animals.

"I'm delighted they are behind bars. Merry Christmas to them all."

And a delighted neighbour said: "The Selwoods are a total nightmare.

"We can finally enjoy the festive season now they are banged up."

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The Selwoods are notorious in their hometown of Tonbridge, Kent , where the three brothers roam around shirtless, clutching Stella lager and starting fights.

  • DARREN, 34, is the latest to be jailed. He got 15 months last week for stabbing a pal who asked to share his steak dinner.
  • LEE, 31, was jailed a fortnight ago along with mum LESLEY, 53, for their latest public affray convictions. The pair were sent down for a total 19 months.
  • JASON, 33, is already serving six years for blowing up a bank cash machine with gas canisters and stealing £19,000.
  • Lesley's daughter KELLY, 29, who has an assault conviction for drenching a neighbour with Toilet Duck cleaner, is the only member of the family NOT behind bars over the festive season.

Oldest brother Darren joined his mum and two brothers in prison after he flipped when a pal asked: "Give us a bit of steak."

Darren replied: "No, but you can have this instead" – and stabbed him in the stomach.

The friend survived and Darren, who has 17 previous convictions for 27 offences, admitted unlawful wounding at Maidstone Crown.

His longest sentence was five-and-a-half years for grievous bodily harm in 2008 after he stamped on a man's head at a party three days before Christmas, causing brain damage.

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In 2014, Darren knocked out a teenage girl clubber, fracturing her eye socket, at a nightspot in Tunbridge Wells.

He was imprisoned for three years.

In 2013 he was jailed for affray with younger brother Lee and mum Lesley after teaming up to attack a neighbour. Lesley brandished a trampoline pole during the attack which was sparked after a car was torched in Chatham, Kent.

Pointing to his mum as she stood alongside him in the dock, Darren asked the judge: "But you are going to lock a woman up?"

Both Lesley and Lee have since ­reoffended and are back inside, with the pair sent down just a fortnight ago for fighting in public.

Lesley got six months for affray and her son was given 13 months for affray and racially aggravated harassment.

A day before the sentencing at Canterbury Crown Court, Lee posted on Facebook: "Sentencing tomorrow looking at 2 years if no one hears from me I'm locked up. I'm under a lot of stress."

A pal replied: "Don't worry, if you're given 2 you'll be out before Christmas next year."

Locals posted messages of delight after the latest jail stretches were handed down.

One wrote: "Please for the love of god and plain old justice throw the key away.

"The whole Selwood tribe is in prison now. They remind me of the family from the hills have eyes."

Another, Sam Chilvers, said the family had been a menace for years.

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He wrote of Darren: "This complete oxygen waster shot me with a sling shot when I was a kid."

And a third added: "Darren is in and out of prison, has been since we left school, all of those convictions and all of those arrests just go to show he will keep on doing what he does.

"He's a threat to society... keep him locked up!"

But Lee's sister Kelly told us her family were being treated unfairly. The mum-of-three, who was convicted of affray over the 2013 neighbour attack alongside her mum and brothers, said: "It's very hard. They aren't even allowed presents.

"They need to be cut some slack – it's Christmas."

But Lesley's sister-in-law and the brothers' aunt Teresa said the community had no sympathy for the mum as she faces Christmas with her nearest and dearest at Her Majesty's pleasure.

Lesley is said to be at HMP Bronzefield women's prison near Staines, Surrey.

Her three sons are scattered among the trio of jails on the Isle of Sheppey in Kent. Teresa said: "All the neighbours keep saying to me 'I bet Lesley's having a nice Christmas' and laughing at her.

"The family have moved around so much because they abuse people wherever they go.

"They are the neighbours from hell. They upset everyone, they think they are superior to everyone else.

"They slashed our tyres and smashed bricks through our window for no reason.

"I had to board planks over the windows to stop the bricks from coming in."

"It's bred into them to be violent."

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Teresa claimed that Kelly also causes trouble with her neighbours.

Kelly appeared at Maidstone Magistrates Court in 2010 over the Toilet Duck attack after a row over her loud music.

The court was told by Kelly's lawyer: "She just lost it and squirted her from the bathroom window, but she told me that earlier water had been squirted over the fence at her."

Kelly was convicted of assault and given a 12- month conditional discharge.

Teresa said: "Lesley gets a call from Kelly saying 'Help, mum' and Lesley goes over to back her."

Lesley's husband Robert died 12 years ago.

Teresa said he was a heavy drinker, adding: "He used to make the kids join in the fights with neighbours. They never went to school.

"Everyone hates the family. They are just bullies. Darren is a coward. If a real man stood up to him he wouldn't know what to do. He is psychotic.

"If he gets out of prison he will kill someone. He gets minimal sentences all the time. It's so frustrating."

Local taxi firms refuse to call at the family's home or pick them up.

A cabbie, who asked not to be named, said: "We were told never to pick them up. They are bad news. Weird.

"I heard they had wild druggie parties where they get up to all sorts together. They are a very weird family, that's an understatement."

A mother-of-two who lives on the same street as Lesley said: "We are planning to have an estate party to celebrate them being locked up. Everyone on the street is delighted."

Neighbours from hell

Neighbours from hell


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