Sheffield a ‘hot-spot’ for fly-tipping with more than 30 incidents a day on average 

Sheffield has been highlighted as a fly-tipping hot spot, with more than 30 incidents every day on average.  

Data released by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs showed there were 12,616 fly-tipping incidents across the city in the 12 months to March. 

Fly-tipping at Chatham Street Car Park, which has since been cleared up.

Fly-tipping at Chatham Street Car Park, which has since been cleared up.

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This was an increase of five per cent from the previous year, when there were 7,784.

While the Sheffield figures were up, the England-wide figure fell slightly over the same period, by just over one per cent - the first decrease in five years.

The Local Government Association, which represents local authorities, described a ‘fly-tipping epidemic’ facing councils with almost a million incidents recorded nationally in 2017/18.

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Councillor Martin Tett, environment spokesman for the LGA, said: "This new analysis shows the scale of the fly-tipping epidemic we face in this country.

"Fly-tipping is unsightly and unacceptable environmental vandalism.

"It’s an absolute disgrace for anyone to think that they can use the environments in which our residents live as a repository for litter."

Tipping incidents in Sheffield most commonly involved volumes of waste that were the equivalent of a small van load.

However, the area is also seeing increasing numbers of large-scale tips, involving a lorry load of rubbish or more.

Waste was most commonly dumped on footpaths or bridleways. Clearing up the rubbish and taking action against perpetrators is estimated to have cost the council around £746,400 last year.

Councils can take a range of actions against fly-tipping, from sending warning letters to launching prosecutions. Last year Sheffield Council took action on 8,728 occasions, up from 3, 367 in 2012/13.

These included launching 7,397 investigations, sending out 966 warning letters, issuing 150 penalty notices, and undertaking 114 inspections. It also carried out eight prosecutions, up from five five years ago. .

Of these prosecutions, seven resulted in a fine, amounting to £2,410. The biggest single penalty imposed by the courts was between £500 and £1,000.

Coun Tett added. "New fixed penalty notice powers from the Government will help but every single conviction for more serious fly-tipping offences still results in council taxpayers having to pick up the bill.

“We need to make sure that when councils take offenders to court, a faster, more effective legal system ensures that serious fly-tipping offences result in hard-hitting fines."

In a statement, Defra said: “The figures show our tough actions to crack down on fly-tippers are delivering results.

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“Councils are using powers to hand out on-the-spot fines to fly-tippers to good effect, and we have made it easier for vehicles suspected of being used for fly-tipping to be stopped, searched and seized.

“New fixed penalty notices for householders who pass their waste to a fly-tipper also come into force shortly, as we continue our efforts to crack down on those who blight our landscapes.”