Hundreds fined in crackdown on Wigan fly-tippers and litterbugs
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Environment officers issued or initiated a total of 273 fines, prosecutions and warning letters over a 90-day period starting earlier this year.
Illegal activity such as fly-tipping is a blight on the environment and Wigan Council says it is committed to working alongside residents to maintain clean and tidy neighbourhoods.
The borough’s magistrates’ courts have been kept busy of late as messy residents find themselves in the dock.
Only last month three were found guilty of failing to clear mounds of rubbish outside their homes and were fined more than £2,500.
Among the waste in the gardens and yards in Wigan and Ince were 46 binbags full of rotting rubbish, a leather chair and sofa and a fridge-freezer.
Coun Paul Prescott, cabinet portfolio holder for environmental services, said: “Our environmental officers have been working within our communities taking enforcement action against fly-tipping, abandoned vehicles and other anti-social activities that impact our environment.
“These crimes cost local authorities hundreds of thousands of pounds every year to clear and fly in the face of the efforts of the vast majority of residents who keep our streets, communities and green spaces clean and tidy.
“Fly-tipping, and offences like it, are crimes, to put it in simple terms. We always want to work with our communities, but we will not hesitate to enforce against that minority who decide to illegally dump rubbish and harm our environment.”
During the 90 days of action, 54 fixed penalty notices were issued, alongside five prosecutions, with 45 more cases waiting to be listed at court.
In addition, 104 rubbish clearing letters and 32 abandoned vehicles letters were sent to residents.
Finally, 33 community protection notices (CPN) were issued. These notices require individuals to take steps to clear the rubbish and deal with the offence. If this is not done, the council can take further enforcement action.
In another case Georgina Lloyd, 32, of Lily Lane, Platt Bridge, appeared before borough magistrates to admit leaving binbags bags full of rubbish in the neighbourhood.
The first offence involved three bags containing a food caddy and children's toys left on a grassed area off Tram Street on or before October 16, 2019.
The second, on Lily Lane, involved five bags containing planks of wood, a parcel shelf from a car, a sofa cushion, a child's booster seat, a bucket, bricks, concrete and a yellow builders’ rubble bag filled with more black binbags, around the same date.
And the third involved another five bags of domestic waste dumped this time in a Tram Street alleyway.
Lloyd was ordered to pay a fine, court costs and a victim services surcharge of £966.84.
Coun Prescott added “Tackling enviro-crimes is a priority for the team. Across Wigan borough, fly-tipped household waste accounts for the largest proportion of rubbish that needs to be removed from council land.
“We would remind residents and businesses to always get rid of their waste legally and responsibly. Wigan Council has recycling centres based at Kirklees, Chanters and Slag Lane. You can find out more about these on the website at www.wigan.gov.uk/recycling.”
Residents are encouraged to report any fly-tipping they spot via www.wigan.gov.uk/reportit