Southend councillor calls for fly-tipping wall of shame

A “wall of shame” of convicted flytippers should be created on Southend Council’s website, a councillor has insisted after he caught a resident dumping rubbish red-handed.

Last week, Aston Line, Labour councillor for Westborough encountered two fly-tippers while out litter picking.

He managed to snap a woman dumping rubbish while a man drove off at speed over glass, puncturing his tyre. They will now face fines.

At the time Cllr Line promised to unveil a solution to the scourge of fly-tipping, which is particularly bad in Westcliff.

Finally revealing his plan yesterday, Cllr Line said: “I have put a motion to Southend Council demanding that urgent measures be taken to address the wave of fly-tipping and environmental crime in our city centre.

“I have suggested that a digital ‘wall of shame’ should be created and hosted on the council’s website, in order to expose fly-tippers who are caught in the act.

“The vast majority of residents want to live in a clean city. Unfortunately, we are being let down by the few who think that it is perfectly acceptable to dump their waste and unwanted furniture on our roads and in our public places.

“Clearing up incidents of fly-tipping costs the local taxpayer a substantial amount of money, which we currently have to factor into the overall price of our waste contract.

“This scheme will cost very little to run and it will inevitably pay for itself many times over by significantly lowering the number of incidents that we face.”

Cllr Line said many of those who fly-tip may see it as “worth the risk” but being publicly shamed may prove a deterrent.

Martin Terry, councillor responsible for public protection, said: “I think it is a great idea. Most fly-tipping is caused regrettably by people living in the town. In most cases there is no excuse.”

Cllr Terry said the scheme could only apply to those who had been through the courts.

He said: “I’m no legal expert, but courts do publish people’s faces when they have committed a crime, but you couldn’t just snap someone and put it up, but anything we can do to keep our streets tidy is a good thing.”

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Christine Sexton

Local Democracy Reporter