First prosecutions for fly tipping

IAN CLARKE A crackdown by a Norfolk council on fly tippers who have cost taxpayers nearly £50,000 in the past year is being stepped up with the first prosecutions taken to court.

IAN CLARKE

A crackdown by a Norfolk council on fly tippers who have cost taxpayers nearly £50,000 in the past year is being stepped up with the first prosecutions taken to court.

Breckland has had 957 reports of rubbish being dumped in the district over the last 12 months on land including roadside verges, fields, watercourses and footpaths.

A vast array of items have been discarded such as building materials, chemical drums, fridges, vehicle parts and hazardous goods.

Now the authority has used new powers under the Clean Neighbourhood and Environment Act to issue its first summonses for fly tipping. The cases are due before magistrates next Tuesday.

In one case a man is alleged to have dumped treated wood, cardboard boxes and a metal incinerator in a site of special scientific interest in Thetford Forest.

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The other allegation relates to plastic sacks of household rubbish dumped at Swaffham by a man from Watton.

Breckland's enforcement officer, former police officer Keith Fuller, has spearheaded the crackdown and said he was getting regular calls from people who have reported fly tipping.

“It shows how much people are on side with us in what we are doing.”

The council has already sent 26 final warnings and six £80 fixed penalty notices.

Ann Steward, cabinet member responsible for the environment, said the authority had given people advice and information and education, but had to be tough when offences were committed.

“Fly tipping is a big concern for local residents and we are showing we mean business. This is a big tourism area and we don't want people's first impression to see rubbish littered around.”

She said it was “heartbreaking” when animals were injured by rubbish carelessly discarded.