Bernard Hall Cuddington
By Haddenham Webteam - 19th September 2013 4:00pm
Fly Tipping is a particularly anti-social act and most law-abiding folk find the sight of dumped rubbish a total obscenity. It would seem that perpetrators must reside in urban environments and have nothing but contempt for the natural beauty of our countryside, given their willingness to deposit unwanted domestic rubbish in rural lay-bys and field gateways — anything from dead fridges and old sofas to garden waste and old paint tins.
Why do they do it? It defies rational comprehension — especially given the number of easily accessible waste and recycling centres provided by the local authorities.
Sadly, offenders* are rarely observed in the act, let alone caught and prosecuted. So it is especially pleasing to bring you news of a Buckinghamshire success story.
A hidden camera caught a man dumping a lawnmower at Spring Lane, Flackwell Heath, near Beaconsfield, and on Wednesday 18th September, Mark Anthony Logan appeared before Wycombe magistrates.
Logan (49), of Hillary Close, High Wycombe, pleaded guilty and was also ordered to pay clean-up and prosecution costs of £500, and a victim surcharge of £15.
The court was told that on 18th May a hidden camera caught a man dumping a Flymo lawnmower at Spring Lane. It photographed the registration plate of the vehicle he was using, which led to Logan's address.
Logan was interviewed by Waste Partnership for Buckinghamshire investigators, and admitted dumping the lawnmower. He said he had picked it up from another place where it had been dumped.
He took the engine out of it to use in his own machine and had intended to take the carcass to the High Heavens Household Waste Recycling Centre. He knew he needed a permit to take it to the site in his pick-up but did not have one.
Logan felt that he was not really contributing to a fly tipping problem as the machine had previously been dumped by someone else and there was already waste dumped at the site off Spring Lane for which he was not responsible.
The case was brought by Buckinghamshire County Council on behalf of the Waste Partnership, which launched its Illegal Dumping Costs campaign in 2003. Since then there have been 384 convictions against individuals and companies for illegal dumping and related offences.
Since April 2010, there has been an average of one conviction a week for fly tipping offences in Buckinghamshire. Thankfully, the number of reported incidents has halved in recent years, and authorities are keen to see this trend continue until the crime is eliminated altogether. We can all play a role.
Illegal dumping in Buckinghamshire can be reported on 0845 330 1856.
* The term "offenders" is used in this report as a generic descriptor — please feel free to insert your own collective noun for such miscreants.