Wed, 09 Nov 2016
A TOILET and a washing machine are among items dumped by fly tippers in rural and green areas on the Hampshire and Berkshire borders, following the cross-county waste wars.
In a controversial move, West Berkshire Council recently issued permits entitling council tax payers across the district to use household waste recycling centres in West Berkshire.
This followed a September 26 ban on anyone living outside the district boundaries using waste centres in West Berkshire.
The ban forces Hampshire villagers living nearest the county border to make a trip of some 15 miles to the nearest Hampshire facility, at Wade Road, Basingstoke.
Since then, many reported sightings of dumped rubbish, mostly over the Hampshire border, include a toilet (between Ecchinswell and Kingsclere), a washing machine (Burghclere) and several Sainsbury’s carrier bags full of rubbish (spotted under the A339 road bridge in Victoria Park, Newbury).
Four months ago, Hampshire county councillor Tom Thacker (Con, Whitchurch and Clere) predicted the increase in fly tipping,
He said: “I believe that the distance from parts of my division to the nearest recycling centre, either in Basingstoke or Andover, will make the choice between making the journey, or dumping in country lanes, more marginal than if they were to be able to continue to use the south Newbury site.
“So, unless more is to be spent on policing fly-tipping, I believe that Hampshire and West Berks should be making every effort to work together to allow local Hampshire residents to use the Newbury facilities.”
Earlier this year, West Berkshire Council denied claims the waste wars would lead to an increase in fly-tipping – despite previously admitting that a rise in the amount of rubbish being dumped illegally was likely.
Concerns were raised following the council’s ban on Hampshire residents using West Berkshire’s tips, coupled with the decision to stop payments allowing West Berkshire residents use of Smallmead tip in Reading.
At the time, the executive member for communities and protection, Marcus Franks, said: “It was identified as a risk in the budget proposal but we have looked at other areas and they haven’t seen an increase in fly-tipping.
“We know the vast majority of West Berkshire residents are responsible enough to dispose of their waste in the right way and there’s a lot of different ways they can do that.”
Newbury Green Party spokesman David Marsh said: “This sounds incredibly counterproductive if they end up having to spend money clearing up rubbish which will probably be more expensive than the amount they save by bringing in these changes.
The decision would create: "More traffic, more pollution and the fly tipping," said Mr Marsh.
Do you have a story or photograph about fly-tipping in West Berkshire or North Hampshire? Email firstname.lastname@example.org