Revealed: The worst-hit Norwich streets and roads for fly-tipping
PUBLISHED: 06:30 06 September 2018 | UPDATED: 11:10 06 September 2018
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Norwich’s worst-hit areas for fly-tipping have been revealed, in figures which show that almost a third of all reports made in 18 months came from just 20 streets.
From January 1 last year to July 31 this year, there were 6,937 reports of fly-tipping, according to Norwich City Council data.
Of those, the highest number - 245 - came from Suffolk Square, with 218 in Lefroy Road and 198 in nearby Bowers Avenue.
In total, 2,005 reports, some of which may be duplicates, were made in 20 roads, making up 29pc of the total.
Fly-tipping has been under the spotlight in recent months, after charges for DIY waste came into force in April, and county councillors set to debate a crackdown on the issue tomorrow.
Kathy Mundy has lived in Suffolk Square for 30 years, but said the problems were worse than ever.
“It is disgusting,” she said. “Where I live looks out over the square and there’s a corner where people just dump everything. We’ve had everything there, the rubbish is unbelievable.
“This week we’ve had bedside tables and all sorts. It’s become so bad that a lorry comes to collect it nearly every afternoon, or at least every other day.”
She believes the controversial introduction of charges for DIY waste had worsened the problem.
And she added that while there was frequent fly-tipping in the square, other people, she said generally from further afield in Norwich, often left goods outside the area’s charity shops.
“The shops take in what they can but there are some things they can’t, and they just get thrown in their bins,” she said.
A 55-year-old man, who lives in the Heathgate area, said fly-tipping had become something residents “just get used to”.
“You see it all the time now - some days it’s a small bit of furniture and others it’s a sofa which is torn up,” the father-of-two said. “You do your bit to report what you can, but it just keeps happening. People in vans turn up and dump stuff, but what can you do?”
The figures reveal a year-on-year increase in reports of fly-tipping - from New Year’s Day 2017 to July 31 of that year there were 2,721 reports made, compared to 3,023 in the same period this year.
Martin Schmierer, lord mayor of Norwich and a city Green party councillor, praised people who reported fly-tipping, and said: “In leafier parts of Norwich it is equally an issue, but in certain areas of the city, such as West Pottergate and Clifton Street, it is a particular issue.
“It makes the area look untidy and it’s difficult to build a strong sense of community if residents feel their area is going downhill.”
He said there were issues at an individual level, with the cost of having larger items removed too steep for some, and that better education was needed to remind people what can be disposed of for free.
But he added: “The particular villains with this issue are those who are telling people they’ll take their rubbish away for £10 or £20, and then just leave it outside a communal bin, which seems to be more of an issue in certain places, including Clifton Street.”
In some areas, residents are taking to the streets to combat fly-tipping and litter, including the Russell Street Residents Association, which regularly heads out to keep the area clean.
Kevin Maguire, Norwich City Council’s cabinet member for safe city environment, said fly-tipping was an “unsightly and costly environmental issue for the city”, and one the council took seriously.
“Most fly-tipping is carried out furtively and is unlikely to be witnessed and there is usually lack of physical evidence of where the waste has come from,” he said. “Much of fly-tipped rubbish in Norwich could have been disposed of free of charge at Swanton Road recycling centre, or collected by Norwich City Council for a small fee, yet some people still continue with this criminal behaviour.”
He said they work hard to prevent fly-tipping, including proactive clearances, encouraging residents to report issues and providing information on how to deal with waste. More details are available on their website.
• Have you been affected by fly-tipping in Norwich? Email firstname.lastname@example.org