Buckinghamshire’s county and district councils are united in taking a ‘zero-tolerance’ stance against fly-tipping across the county - driven by our local joint waste committee.
On average, we are convicting one offender every five days as we remain committed to reducing the number of offenders who illegally dump waste across some of the most beautiful parts of the county.
Since 2003, when we first launched our ‘Illegal Dumping Costs’ campaign, the partnership has achieved a 45% reduction in fly-tipping, massively reducing the incidents of unsightly dumping which has been a major issue for residents and blighted the county’s landscape.
Over that time, 240 convictions have been secured resulting in over £300,000 in fines and costs together with four suspended prison sentences. The courts have also awarded a total of 2,250 hours of unpaid work meaning dumpers have rightly had to contribute something back to the community they originally disfigured.
Local residents have also been lending their support by coming forward and reporting incidents where they see people dumping waste illegally. Indeed, last year over 40% of convictions were secured directly from eye witness evidence, particularly reporting vehicle registration numbers, which demonstrates the public’s commitment to stamping out this anti-social behaviour.
The Waste Partnership also publishes media releases after every successful conviction which names the offender, the nature of the fly-tipping and the sentence or fine. This ‘naming and shaming’ has a dual purpose – to both publicise the consequences of fly-tipping in our county and to emphasise the fact that firm and robust action will always be taken.
Gateways, woodland areas and hedgerows are often susceptible, particularly in the more rural areas of the county. In known ‘hot-spot’ areas, we will use warning signs and covert camera surveillance controlled by the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act. Images from these operations have been extremely successful in catching fly-tippers.
We also estimate that last year we saved in excess of £150,000 of taxpayers’ money in clearance costs alone so, as well as improving the local environment, our actions are delivering value for money as well.
Buckinghamshire’s environment is highly valued by local people and visitors alike and through our tough action, we are confident we are winning the war against illegal dumping.
- The Waste Partnership for Buckinghamshire is made up of Buckinghamshire CC and the four district councils, Aylesbury Vale, Chiltern, South Bucks and Wycombe DCs.
Martin Tett (Con) cabinet member for planning and environment, Buckinghamshire CC and vice-chairman of the joint waste committee