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1st Jul, 2022

DEFRA figures show rocketing fly-tipping rates in Warwickshire

FLY-TIPPING has rocketed across Warwickshire.

New DEFRA figures compare fly-tipping incidents in local government areas in the two years up to last April.

In Stratford district, illegal rubbish dumping cases almost doubled from 338 to 612.

But Stratford District Council’s climate change spokesman Ian Shenton pointed out, although the district had experienced an increase, fly-tipping levels were lower than those of most local authorities.

He said: “The whole of England has seen increases and our rate of 4.6 incidents per 1,000 of population ranks us at 36 out of 314. In similar sized local authorities the average is 14.2 incidents per 1,000.

“Fly-tipping is environmental vandalism – it’s unpleasant, unnecessary and unacceptable. Sadly, like many local authorities we have to spend money each year tacking litter and fly-tipping, but our Streetscene Team at Stratford have done a great job in responding quickly to incidents, investigating and taking action.

“There will always be those that think it is acceptable to dump rubbish somewhere else, blighting other residents’ areas. These fly tippers are anti-social people committing a criminal act and should be ashamed of themselves and if we obtain enough evidence we will fine them or prosecute.”

He added the council had seen a 15 per cent decrease to pre-pandemic levels in the current financial year.

In Warwick district, fly-tipping has risen by around 11.5 per cent, from 1505 to 1680 incidents.

A spokeswoman for Warwick District Council said the authority was committed to tackling the problem.

She told the Observer: “Warwick District Council is deeply concerned about increased incidents of fly-tipping over the last two years.

“The dumping of rubbish is illegal and potentially dangerous and requires the deployment of valuable resources to remove it.

“We are currently trialling the installation of CCTV cameras in an area of Leamington, which we hope will act as a deterrent to would-be fly-tippers and provide valuable evidence for the council to carry out enforcement action. If successful this could be extended to other hotspots.”

Meanwhile in neigbouring Rugby, more than 2,450 cases were recorded in the borough – a massive 81 per cent rise on the previous year.

The figures were released amid a seasonal surge in fly-tipping, when post-festive waste tends to be illegally dumped under cover of darkness.

An agricultural expert warned the figures were not a true reflection of the cost of fly-tipping because they only included incidents on council land.

Rupert Wailes-Fairbairn of farm insurance specialist Lycetts said farmers had to meet the ‘hidden costs’ of illegal dumping as they were responsible for clearing rubbish from their land – at an average cost of £1,000 per incident.

He said: “The responsibility for removing waste from private land falls squarely at the feet of the landowners. If they fail to do so, they can face prosecution.”

Visit www.www.warwickshire.gov.uk/flytippingandlitter for information on reporting fly-tipping.

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