Illegal tipping in Berkshire 'costs thousands'

Image caption Waste dumped on people's land becomes their responsibility

Illegal fly-tipping in Berkshire is costing landowners thousands of pounds a year, according to figures released by Defra.

There were more than 5,000 incidents in the county last year but only four people were successfully prosecuted.

Wokingham Borough Council's waste and recycling manager Pete Baveystoke said it spent up to £50,000 a year clearing up waste from land it owns.

He added the council also paid a further £100 a tonne to dispose of it.

Serious problem

Colin Raynor runs several farms in the county and on average has dealt with one fly-tipping incident every day.

"What the rules are is that once it's on my land it's my responsibility so we then have to take it to a licensed landfill site," he said.

"A single load can cost thousands of pounds, if we don't do that we're in trouble with the Environment Agency and rightly so."

Fly-tipping is also a serious problem on Maidenhead and Cookham Commons where lots of waste is being regularly dumped.

The National Trust owns the land and spokesman Geri Silverstone said: "Over the last couple of weeks we've had over 200 tyres dumped over 24 hours and it costs us on average over £5 a tyre just for it to be legally dumped."

Councils are asking people to report any suspicious activity.

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