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Man fined following nature reserve flytip

Published May 19, 2022 9.23am

A man has been ordered to pay more than £450 after a vehicle he hired was used to dump waste at a County Durham nature reserve.

Bags of waste and polystyrene were found in a layby at the entrance to Bishop Middleham Nature Reserve last July, after one of our neighbourhood wardens received information about a flytip.

Monitored by CCTV 

Bishop Middleham flytip

The waste dumped at Bishop Middleham Nature Reserve

CCTV footage showed a car entering the area and a man throwing items into the nearby hedgerow, with checks identifying that the car was hired by Stephen Ryan, of White Crescent, Hartlepool.

The 55-year-old failed to respond to correspondence from us and did not attend an interview arranged by the warden, resulting in us taking legal action against him.

In mitigation, Peterlee Magistrates Court heard how Ryan has health issues and that his partner had used the vehicle without his knowledge on the date of the incident. 

However, Ryan pleaded guilty to knowingly causing controlled waste to be deposited and failing to an assist the investigation into flytipping.

Magistrates fined him £275 and ordered him to pay partial costs of £150 and a victim surcharge of £34, totally £459.

'Dispose of your waste correctly'

Ian Hoult, our neighbourhood protection manager, said: "Flytipping is a serious offence which will not be tolerated in County Durham. It blights our beautiful countryside, harms the natural environment and is a significant concern amongst residents.

"Hopefully, this prosecution serves as a reminder to everyone, not just to dispose of their waste correctly, but to be aware of how vehicles they are responsible for are being used at all times. We would also stress that there are so many ways for households and businesses to get rid of their waste responsibly. This includes taking unwanted items to our household waste recycling centres, paying for a bulky waste collection or even donating items which are in good condition, to a re-use scheme."

To find more about flytipping and how to report it, visit our Flytipping page.