The UK’s Growing Litter Army:
Fly-Tipping Watch Spalding and Local
Campaigner Mark Douglass who works to fight fly-tipping set up a Facebook group in Spalding back in November and almost 700 people have joined to date. He is using the page, called Fly-tipping Watch Spalding and Local, to recruit eagle-eyed volunteers to keep an eye on the streets and back lanes, in the hope that those who dump their rubbish illegally will be caught in the act and fined.
Mark’s ambition is to have groups set up to cover Lincolnshire, and to recruit so many volunteers that it acts as a deterrent to would-be fly-tippers.
The power of social media
People can post pictures and details of any incidents of fly-tipping on the Facebook page, then the group visits the area and carries out a clean up. Mark points out that because the fly-tipping problem is staring people in the face on social media, it can’t be ignored. He also credits social media with giving the group the chance to act fast, deal with the problem, and identify offenders so they can be reported.
Fly-tipped waste comes from many sources
The group says that fly-tipped waste comes from different sources including illegal waste removal operatives and people who come to dump household rubbish that bin men wouldn’t or didn’t take, and old bulky items like furniture.
The group recently held its first major clean up in Spalding, which has a particular problem with rubbish being dumped at roadsides. In fact, four or five fly-tipping incidents are reported every day, and Mark believes that there are a lot more incidents that go unreported.
Hopes for partnership working
He has a meeting at the end of the month to discuss how his group can work in partnership with the local council to tackle fly-tipping. The group is hoping for a positive outcome, given that the Lincolnshire Police and Crime Commissioner recently tweeted that he wants to turn the area into a "fly-tip free zone". He recently called a meeting of local authorities and other agencies to discuss what could be done about fly-tipping and has also promised to create a map showing fly-tipping hotspots so resources can be targeted at the worst hit areas.
Do you live in Lincolnshire and want to find out more about the group? Click here.