Call to re-open Doncaster's tips as car bumpers, old mattresses, even protective masks and gloves, help fuel major rise in flytipping
Car bumpers, old mattresses, even protective masks and gloves – these are just some of the items helping fuel a major rise in flytipping since Doncaster’s tips closed.
Residents are concerned Doncaster is facing a major increase in flytipping, with re-cycling centres closed, streets empty of people, and families producing more rubbish at home.
An investigation by the Doncaster Free Press has revealed worries about accumulations of waste ranging from car bumpers, old window frames, and even discarded gloves and masks.
It has emerged as a problem in the alleyways of the towns, next to country lanes, and in woodland.
Sean Gibbons, who represents Mexborough on Doncaster Council, runs a food bank, and while delivering has become aware of the issue of flytipping. He said: “As we’ve been out and about, we have become aware there is now a flytipping issue.
“There is a lot at the bottom of the Maple Road area. We’ve seen it in the back in places like Sycamore Avenue and Oak Road, behind Auckland Road and Princess Road.
“The tips are all closed, so we need to react to this. Where is all the rubbish going to go? There is only so much room in the black bins, and green bins have been suspended. People are at home more, people are doing more DIY, so they’ll create more waste at home. On top of that, South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue are saying don’t have garden fires. This is a recipe for a problem. We’re seeing an increase in flytipping, and its not just in urban areas. It’s an issue in places like Marr and at the top end of Edlington, going out towards Micklebring and Rotherham.
“Someone needs to come up with a solution. When are we going to start opening our tips?”
Sheena Moore is a volunteer litter picker in Stainforth. She said many of the other volunteers who do similar work are currently self isolating because of their age, meaning there was less rubbish being picked up. She and her team has placed some of the tipped rubbish they have found in Stainforth at the roadside near where it was found on Ramskir Lane. Usually, Streetscene staff would collect it, but since lockdown, she said that had not been happening as it had in the past.
She said she was aware of a rise in flytipping in nearby Hatfield.
She said: “I think it would be helpful if they opened tips on a skeleton staff, with social distancing place.”
Gaynor Bennett-Spencer, who set up the Keeping Rossington Tidy volunteer group was also aware of a current issue with tipping. She said in Rossington the issue seemed to be on the path known locally as waddy lane, next to the cemetery, off Grange Lane, as well as the woods nearby.
Bex Shaw, who set up Doncaster Green Team to clear up the streets and parks, said: “I would say there has definitely been an increase from what I have heard and seen.
“I don’t know if it’s because the council have less staff working on retrieving it too. There was a pile in my local park car park a few days ago but it was gone the next day so I presume the council are still working hard to keep Doncaster clean. There has been an increase in gloves and masks littered too.
“I have also noticed just around where I live that a lot of people are dumping items in alleyways etcetera, as they clean out their homes but that is nothing new unfortunately.”
Jackie Dusi campaigns on litter in the Bentley and Arksey area, and has recently reports a big pile of car bumpers near Bentley Common Lane. Near The Balk, she has seen window frames, white plastic ones, and conservatories dumped, while on Millgate, Bentley, she has seen piles of dumped rubbish. She said she thought alleygates should be installed.
Police are also aware of the issue. In his Doncaster Free Press column last week, South Yorkshire Police’s neighbourhood inspector for Doncaster West said patrols had been increased in rural areas near Sprotbrough because of the increase in dumping.
Doncaster Council says the coronavirus pandemic has meant that the council has reduced some services, including picking up litter and dumped rubbish, to be able to respond to the needs of vulnerable communities who are most in need of help and to ensure safe working practices for staff. Household Waste Recycling Centres have had to be temporarily closed and green bin collections have been suspended to enable the more crucial black and blue bins to continue to be emptied.
Cabinet member for the environment, Coun Chris McGuinness said: “We totally understand that people may have more household waste than usual during the lockdown period, but this is NOT an excuse to dump it. We are seeing an increase in dumped rubbish, especially down back alleys, which is putting people’s health at risk and increasing the need for frontline workers to have to respond to incidents at a time when we all should be doing everything we can to protect each other. I urge people to do their civic duty during this time of crisis.
“My message for these disgusting fly-tippers - we investigate all reported incidents and we’ve recently invested in state of the art technology to catch people in the act. We WILL catch you.”
> To report an incident of fly-tipping visit www.doncaster.gov.uk/report-it although the council says some incidents may take longer to deal with than usual during this time.