Restrictions at tips in Doncaster branded a ‘joke’ as policy sparks fly-tipping increase fear

Doncaster Council’s new restrictions on items being brought to recycling and waste centres have been branded ‘a joke’.

Conisbrough Household Waste Recycling Centre
Conisbrough Household Waste Recycling Centre

Many angry residents have hit out at the policy on social media which restricts the number of items being brought to the tip at five every six months at all six council-run tips.

One resident said he was turned away after bringing six bags of soil to the tip in Armthorpe while another said a friend was couldn't dump anymore items after leaving five bricks in a council-run skip.

Many have said the policy will only increase fly-tipping across the borough but Doncaster Council bosses have said a new waste contract – which also includes Rotherham and Barnsley – meant they had to scale back on the amount of building debris they could accept. 

Bosses also said they actually have ‘no legal duty’ to provide a free tip service. 

Conservative Finningley Coun Jane Cox told the Local Democracy Reporting Service she would be raising the issue at a relevant scrutiny meeting and said she was concerned fly-tipping could increase as a result. 

Posting on social media, Luke Moss criticised the policy brought in by the council. 

He said: “Doncaster Council are a joke! Just came back from Armthorpe tip, bringing with me six bags of soil. You know, that non toxic stuff found all over the world.

“Apparently you can only take five items now to go into rubble or soil skip every six months.

“No wonder there's so much fly tipping. I'm sure there will be a reduction in my rates next year though! By the way if you take six bricks, you’ll have to bring one back with you!”

Richard Gelder added: “How on earth (are) you helping when you set these rules at local tips?  All you are doing is making people to do more fly tipping.

“Come use your heads for once, all you think about is how can (you) cause more trouble. What on earth do we pay council tax for?”

But Norman Cook defended the policy and said: “Why should the rate payers be subsiding commercial operations by disposing of their rubbish for free?”

Conservative councillor Jane Cox said: "As vice-chair of communities and environment scrutiny, I’m prepared to ask the chair if we can bring this decision back to scrutiny to ask the question whether the new policy which came into effect in April 2019 has affected the fly-tipping across the borough. 

“We’ll be asking for these figures to be published."

Assistant director of environment, Gill Gillies, said: “Firstly, we are not imposing an outright ban on building waste as we recognise that residents do have legitimate reasons to dispose of limited quantities of these materials from small DIY projects which they have carried out themselves.

“In fact, the council has no legal duty to provide a free point of disposal for waste from works of construction, demolition or excavation, but we recognise that residents may generate small amounts which is the reason why the provision is on site.

“However, as part of a new contract covering Doncaster, Barnsley and Rotherham councils, we had to standardise the amount – and regularity – of building debris we could accept. Ultimately, the six household waste recycling centres are available for residents and items that they might not be able to dispose of at the kerbside.

“The contract has now been in place for six months, during which time our staff have informed customers of the changes prior to them coming in to force and information is also on the council’s website.”