A cat lover has vowed to fight to the bitter end after being told to get rid of five of her pets.

Jenny Sampson said she would resist all attempts to take the cats from her after she lost an appeal against an enforcement order. The appeal found she had broken planning rules by keeping 17 cats at her home at Rossmore Drive in Allerton.

Neighbours had complained of the felines wandering freely and defecating on their gardens. The decision gives her three months to cut the number of cats living at her four bedroomed semi to 12 - or face prosecution. Enforcement officers could also be sent into her home to take the cats if she refuses.

Neighbours on the cul-de-sac said the cats had made their lives a "nightmare". More than 50 people signed a petition last year calling for something to be done.

Brian Danby, 61, said: "I am delighted with the decision. It is something we have campaigned for for a long time. My garden is covered in faeces which has resulted in an excessive amount of flies."

Next door neighbour Elizabeth Robert-shaw added: "The nuisance from these cats is unbelievable."

Mrs Sampson, a disc-jockey, is currently considering a challenge in the High Court but claims she will never give up her "family" of cats.

She said: "They will have to take me kicking and screaming before they get my pets from me. They have no right to do it.

"All of my cats have health problems so it would be impossible to find a new home for them and there is no way I would consider putting them to sleep." Mrs Sampson helps to run the nearby Prune Park Cat Rescue and an additional cattery in her back garden has not been affected by the ruling.

In his appeal decision, planning inspector Sean Slack said keeping the cats and allowing the front garden to be used as a toilet was a material change of use for the property.

In a separate action, an abatement notice has previously been served on Mrs Sampson by Bradford Council meaning she can be fined £500 for every day the alleged nuisance continues or be taken to court where she could face a £5,000 fine.

She has already built up legal bills of £1,600 after abandoning an appeal against the abatement notice but said she was prepared to bankrupt herself.