Trio in court over beauty spot fly tipping

Rubbish dumped at Abbey Lakes
Rubbish dumped at Abbey Lakes

This is the appalling mound of rubbish dumped by three handymen at a Wigan beauty spot.

The trio had set themselves up as a professional gardening, handyman and removals service, Wigan and Leigh Magistrates heard, in an attempt to get off the dole.

The case sends out a strong message to all those who illegally dump waste that we will work hard to track you down and make sure you pay for what you have done

Coun Kevin Wright

But when a council recycling centre demanded £30 to accept the waste from a contract they had only charged out at £40, they decided to illegally dump the waste at the entrance to Abbey Lakes Country Park, Up Holland, instead.

But the hapless threesome – Simon Culshaw, Jack Keeley and Nicole Isik – were soon tracked down by council investigators because they left a bill amongst the rubbish which enabled them to be traced.

Health and safety portfolio holder at West Lancs Council, Coun Kevin Wright, said: “This has been a long investigation but our officers were determined to prove who dumped the rubbish and worked extremely hard to bring about this successful prosecution.

“The case sends out a strong message to all those who illegally dump waste that we will work hard to track you down and make sure you pay for what you have done.”

Magistrates decided not to impose a separate charge for a similar fly tipping offence off Tower Hill Road.

Kay Lovelady, prosecuting on behalf of the local authority, said that its investigators had been called in by an outraged nature lover who came across the waste after parking up to enjoy a ramble at Abbey Lakes, on the border of Orrell and Up Holland.

The culprits were traced after the council officers quickly turned up “correspondence” within the rubbish, with contact details on it.

Representing themselves, Isik elected to also speak on behalf of Culshaw and Keeley and said all wanted to apologise for their actions.

She said that the fledgling company had approached West Lancs Council for permits and believed it had the correct documentation, only to arrive at the council tip and be told that it wasn’t acceptable and they would have to pay £30 to legally deposit that amount of waste, more than once a year.

She explained: “That would have left us with just £3 each afterwards because we had only charged £40 for the van load.

“And that just wouldn’t have been worth it.

“It was the wrong thing to do but the job was for friends and we didn’t want to let them down.

“Gardening goes OK in the summer but it is removals in the winter when there is no gardening, which is why we wanted a proper permit.”

All three were told that they could pay the fines at the rate of £5 per week.

As she left the dock, Isik told the presiding magistrate: “Sorry for wasting your time on such a rubbish case.”