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Sunderland woman hit with bill to clean up rubbish she dumped in back lane

Rubbish dumped in the back lane in Ryhope
Rubbish dumped in the back lane in Ryhope

A woman has been hit with the bill for cleaning up waste she dumped in a back lane.

The unnamed woman from Ryhope has had to pay the costs of cleaning up a pile of plastic packaging, boxes, bags and other kinds of household waste after dumping it in a back lane near her home.

She admitted dumping the waste in the back lane of Thomas Street when questioned by environmental enforcement officers who found evidence linking it to her property.

The woman had to pay the £70 cost of clearing and disposing of the waste and was issued with a formal written warning notice.

It comes after the Echo launched its Clean Streets campaign aimed at getting people more involved in cleaning up the city.

Related: Readers hit out at rubbish dumped in Sunderland

In a survey of readers, 66% said the cleanliness of Sunderland's public spaces was poor or very poor. The Clean Streets campaign encourages people to report dumping and litter blackspots, highlight the issue by sending pictures to us, and get involved in community clean-ups.

In response to the Ryhope dumping incident, Councillor Michael Mordey, cabinet member for City Services, said he hoped the action against the woman would discourage others from flytipping and dropping litter.

Related: Extra £1.5million could be spent on tackling litter louts and improving bin collections in Sunderland

"It's simply not right that the vast majority of residents who take a pride in their city and put their rubbish out responsibly should have to carry the cost of cleaning up after those who don't so it's important that where we can identify those responsible we make them pay the costs of clearing it up," he said.

"I hope that this enforcement action sends out a strong message to everyone that we will not tolerate this type of behaviour in our city, and that we can and will clamp down on people who dump rubbish irresponsibly.

"It's not fair on those who act responsibly if we allow the minority who don't to get away with it. That's why we will continue to take action against anyone we catch littering or fly-tipping where there is sufficient evidence to do so.

"We’d also encourage anyone who does see anyone fly tipping or dropping litter to report it to https://www.sunderland.gov.uk/article/12416/Report-fly-tipping."

Since April 2017, the City Council's Environmental Enforcement Team has carried out 3668 investigations into environmental crimes across the city, including littering, dog fouling and fly-tipping.

This has resulted in 322 formal warnings being issued, 3 statutory notices and 82 Fixed Penalty Notice being served. Several further cases are pending court action.