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Fly-tipping campaigner urges further action 

March 22, 2021 12:52 PM


The organiser of a community campaign to tackle fly tipping in Telford has said the council's trial of free bulky waste collections is a "great start" but more needs to be done.

CLLR GREG SPRUCE WOODSIDE FLY TIPPING PETITION

Madeley Town Councillor Greg Spruce launched the campaign for free bulk collections and other measures to deal with dumping in January 2020, following complaints about items abandoned in the street.

"I am absolutely delighted that council bosses are finally starting to listen after more than a year of campaigning," highlighted Cllr Spruce. "However, a time-limited trial is not really enough. This needs to be permanent, and give residents a fast turnaround from booking to collection."

Telford & Wrekin Council announced the bulky items collections trial on Friday in areas of the borough most severely affected by fly-tipping, including Liberal Democrat Cllr Spruce's town ward of Woodside.

More than 150 local residents joined the Woodside-based campaign, which included a petition, letters to the council cabinet member responsible for waste collection and raising awareness in the media.

Telford has one of the worst fly-tipping rates in the West Midlands, Government statistics released last month show, with a rate of 18.5 per 1,000 people in 2019/20, almost twice the figure for Wolverhampton.

The trial is limited to Woodside, Brookside, Dawley & Aqueduct, Donnington, Hadley & Leegomery, Madeley & Sutton Hill, Malinslee & Dawley Bank, and The Nedge. It will run from 6th to 16th of April, with bookings accepted from Monday 22nd March. 225 collections will be made on a first come-first-served basis, and limited to one collection of up to six items per household.

In addition, the council is extending hours at household recycling centres to 8.00 AM to 6.00 PM daily from 22nd March to 6th June, and stepping up fly-tipping enforcement.

"This is a real demonstration of people power," highlighted Cllr Spruce. "When we started campaigning, we were accused by complacent councillors of being 'negative' and even 'pathetic'. There was an implication that we were doing the area down just by speaking up. But we stuck to our guns, and at last we have made progress. The people of Woodside should be very proud."

The trial is limited to Woodside, Brookside, Dawley & Aqueduct, Donnington, Hadley & Leegomery, Madeley & Sutton Hill, Malinslee & Dawley Bank, and The Nedge. It will run from 6th to 16h of April, with bookings accepted from Monday 22nd March. It is on a first come first served basis and limited to one collection of up to six items per household. All slots are now taken, Lib Dems will be pushing for more.

In addition, the council is extending hours at household recycling centres to 8.00 AM to 6.00 PM daily from 22nd March to 6th June, and stepping up fly-tipping enforcement.

Cllr Spruce has emphasised that this is not the end of the campaign. Not only are permanent measures needed, say campaigners, but a convenient service is critical. A Keep Britain Tidy report published last year emphasised that lack of convenience of collection services is a key driver of fly tipping behaviour.

"I am looking forward to seeing the effects of the trial," said Cllr Spruce. "But we need full time measures to tackle this problem, which causes misery to the decent, law-abiding members of our great community."