A 30-year-old man has been fined £6,400 after 12 tonnes of rubbish was dumped in beautiful countryside near Bath, including at an Iron Age Fort and on land belonging to a scout group.
The actions of Garth Creese, from Crediton Crescent, Bristol, were described by the prosecution as deliberate and led to blatant acts of environmental vandalism in some of the most beautiful and historic areas in the district which had cost innocent landowners in excess of £3,500 to clear up.
Creese, who runs a waste clearance business, pleaded guilty to nine offences, under the Environmental Protection Act, in Rankers Lane, Compton Dando, Keynsham Scout Group land in Chelwood and two incidents at the site of an Iron Age fort in Stantonbury Hill and Stanton Prior. He was fined £1,600 per offence.
Creese appeared before Bath Magistrates on Monday February 19, and was also ordered to pay £450 costs and a victim surcharge of £160.
Bath and North East Somerset Council brought the prosecution following reports of piles of rubbish dumped in the locations between November 24 and December 13 2016.
The court heard that the legislation is designed to ensure those disposing and handling waste take reasonable care to ensure it is only handled by reputable waste handlers and any transfer of waste is accompanied by a Waste Transfer Note, so that waste is traceable and incidences of fly-tipping reduced.
But the court was told Creese’s unregulated waste clearance business resulted in significant incidences of fly-tipping of builders’ rubbish and household waste including black bagged waste, large household items including a sofa, chairs, a fridge-freezer and miscellaneous items of rubbish.
Magistrates heard during the investigation that it became clear that Creese showed potential customers an expired Waste Carriers Permit and offered his services at a rate that could never have covered the costs of legitimate disposal.
Speaking after the guilty plea, Councillor Bob Goodman, (Conservative Coombe Down), cabinet member for Development and Neighbourhoods, said: “The investigation took a lot of time but this is an excellent result for the council and its Waste Enforcement Team which I want to thank for its hard work.
“This sends a clear message that we will always prosecute. Fly-tipping is anti-social and in this case a blight on beautiful countryside. We want to remind people that if you employ a waste clearance company please make sure it is a reputable one with up-to-date waste carriers licence.”