Wokingham Borough Council’s new anti-social behaviour team has successfully stopped two potential fly-tippers from dumping a large amount of clothing in the borough. The incident took place one afternoon in June on Sindlesham Road in Arborfield.
One of the council’s anti-social behaviour officers noticed a van parked suspiciously on the side of Sindlesham Road. Two males appeared to be sorting through piles of clothing onto the path. The anti-social behaviour officer approached, turned on a camera and read the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 (PACE) caution to the men.
Once questioned by the officer, the men claimed they were sorting through the clothing and were going to take the unwanted clothes to a local waste collection service for disposal. The officer expressed disbelief in their story and stated that the side of a busy road was not the correct time or place to carry out this activity.
The two men were asked to show their waste carriers licence, a valid document which shows that they are registered to transport and dispose of waste, which they did. The men started to load all the clothes back onto their van.
The anti-social behaviour officer made a note of their company name, waste carrier’s licence number and van details, whilst advising the two men that the council has a zero-tolerance approach to fly-tipping. The officer let the men continue their journey following some words of advice.
The council’s new executive member for environment, sport and leisure, Cllr Ian Shenton said: “This is a great result for the council, our residents and the borough. We believe that these two individuals were going to commit a fly-tipping offence and thanks to our proactive anti-social behaviour officer, they were stopped in their tracks.
“We are all responsible for keeping our borough clean and green which means disposing of waste legally. You can help by checking to see if your waste carrier is licenced by using the quick check tool which takes less than two minutes by visiting the Environment Agency’s website. We also provide a large, unwanted items service which collects up to five large items for a charge of £58.10. You can also take unwanted items to our local Re3 recycling centres in Longshot Lane, Bracknell, or Smallmead, Reading. We do not tolerate fly-tipping and anyone caught disposing of waste illegally in our borough will face penalties or prosecution.”
About the new anti-social behaviour service
The council’s new, in-house anti-social behaviour service went live on 1 April. The proactive team patrol troublesome hot spots in the borough seven days a week, including evenings and weekends. The team deals with a range of issues including noisy neighbours, fly-tipping, nuisance bonfires, abandoned vehicles or bothersome vehicle use including car meets, noise and dust from building sites, unauthorised advertising, mismanagement of waste and unlawful encampments.
The new service includes an animal warden to handle stray dogs, tackle animal neglect and promote responsible ownership.
The team will also work closely with food safety officers who in turn work with retailers, pubs and restaurants, and will have licensing officers overseeing alcohol sales, betting shops, arcades and taxis as well as a housing team supervising landlords in the private rented sector.
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