Belfast Hills Partnership have been chasing fly-tippers throughout 2022 with quite a measure of success, passing on details and images of over 20 incidents of fly-tipping to local councils for investigation and often prosecution.
“Most urban fringe areas suffer from ongoing fly-tipping”, said Partnership Manager Jim Bradley, “with many assuming that there’s nothing that can be done to stop persistent offenders emptying their rubbish along quiet country lanes in the hills. We decided enough was enough and started putting up cameras to catch these polluters.”
By securing funding, signage and licenses for cameras to monitor hot spots, the Partnership has been working in conjunction with local authorities to monitor and deter fly-tipping incidents
Local residents have also welcomed signage from Belfast Hills Partnership discouraging fly-tipping. They have been co-operative and supportive of the measures being taken by the charity to address this ongoing issue. BHP Wildlife Connections Officer Noel Rice highlights the effectiveness of the signage, “Residents who bear the brunt of this anti-social behaviour have told us that the presence of signage, whilst not eliminating fly-tipping, has definitely reduced the amount of incidents.”
Unfortunately, the festive season often coincides with an increase in fly-tipping around the hills. With Christmas decorations coming down and the New Year approaching a lot of people may have generated increased waste in their homes. BHP would like to remind residents to keep the hills tidy and free from waste by disposing of it properly. If not collected by a reliable person your rubbish could end up being dumped and you could be held liable.
BHP would like to remind people to explore their options when discarding unwanted items. Local Councils can offer a free bulky waste collection service for larger items such as furniture and some electrical appliances. Items that are still in good condition can be donated for future use to charity shops. Platforms such as Freecycle can link you up with local people who might be interested in what you no longer want. BHP Manager Jim Bradley had this to say,
“Everyone always focuses on recycling but re-using things are just as important. Before you part with something consider whether it is at the end of its life-span or if you or someone else can breathe some new life into it. Putting in that extra bit of thought and care means our hills stay free from rubbish.”
If you see illegal dumping this festive season remember that you can report it to the local authorities who can take appropriate action. By working together communities can send a strong message that fly-tipping will not be tolerated at any time of the year.