‘Ruining our countryside’: Fury at fly-tipping at beauty spot for third time in two months
Saul Cooke-Black, local democracy reporter
Rubbish has been dumped at a beauty spot in Torfaen for the third time in two months, which has sparked fury from locals.
A washing machine, sofa and carpet are among items which have been fly-tipped on Varteg Hill in Abersychan.
The incident was reported to Torfaen council on Sunday and was due to be cleared today (Tuesday).
Campaigners have voiced anger over fly-tipping incidents in the Abersychan area.
Players from Fairfield United football club and Talywain RFC teamed up with other volunteers to clear fly-tipping from the Cwmnantddu Valley on the British mountain in the spring.
Cllr Chris Tew, who represents the ward, said it is the third time in two months that rubbish has been dumped on Varteg Hill.
He said there are plans for cameras to be installed to catch the offenders, a proposal which Torfaen council said was under review.
“I just hope we can catch them and get the message across that this is not acceptable,” Cllr Tew said.
“It’s ruining our countryside.”
A spokeswoman for Torfaen council it was aware of the incident and has arranged for the rubbish to be collected by its Streetscene team on Tuesday.
She added: “The use of CCTV is being kept under review.”
It comes as a council report into the cleanliness of the borough shows fly-tipping incidents in Torfaen are at a five-year high.
There were 1,046 fly-tipping incidents in 2020/21 in Torfaen, up from 934 the previous year.
“The figures show a steady increase in fly-tipping up to 2019/20, with a substantial increase in 2020/21, supporting feedback from our operational teams on the increase in fly-tipping during then first Covid lockdown period,” the report says.
The report, due to be discussed by councillors on Thursday, also shows a fall in the number of enforcement cases in relation to fly-tipping.
There were just 26 enforcement cases in 2020/21 – down from 62 the previous year – and this is despite a rise in the number of fly-tipping incidents.
The report says the reduction was due to officers being diverted due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Covid-19 also presented council officers with ‘challenges’ in carrying out investigations into fly-tipping, the report says.