Tax threat over clean-up

Bins full of rubbish from the banking outside Mr Bott's home
Bins full of rubbish from the banking outside Mr Bott's home

A BUSINESSMAN who cleaned up a Wigan grot-spot plans to charge the town hall for his services.

Tyre dealer Alan Bott spent eight hours of back-breaking toil removing mounds of fly-tipped rubbish and general litter from the banking and bushes opposite his home on the S-bends in Standish Lower Ground.

He claims he was forced to take action himself because of the council’s “much less than half-hearted” attempt at removing the environmental blight.

An agry Mr Bott collected 11 wheelie bins’ worth of rubbish, including “hundreds” of empty alcohol bottles plus several broken mobile phones, apparently thrown from passing cars and lorries.

Plus the remnants of a council street lamp, which clearly was not.

The Wigan dad say he will now deduct the cost of eight hours of his labour from the amount he is prepared to pay from this year’s council tax.

He insists his actions didn’t cause a road safety hazard because he wore a Hi-Vis tabard and put cones and a warning sign on the road to alert motorists of his presence.

The direct action - and the potential partial council tax strike - is the latest salvo in a battle between Mr Bott and a the authority over its responsibility to keep one of the major entry points into the borough spick and span.

He claims that the “awful mess” greeting motorists could even be putting off potential investors from starting industries in the town.

Mr Bott said: “I am deadly serious ... the council would have had to pay their own staff for the work I did and at overtime rate as well because it was on a Sunday.

“So rather than paying them for the work they can pay my bill instead.

“Particularly as I really put a shift in, as you can see if you go down there and look at the S bends now.

“I am told that an element of my council tax each year covers waste collection so it is quite right and proper that if am forced to do their job for them when they can’t or won’t, I should pay a reduced amount of council tax to cover it.”

The council failed to respond to the Evening Post’s requests for a comment about Mr Bott’s threat to withhold an element of his council tax in lieu of payment for his labour to complete the clean-up.