Fly-tippers dump mountain of disgusting rubbish by canal on the edge of Harborough
They have struck again less than a year after household and building rubbish along with human excreta was piled up on the same spot
Fly-tippers have dumped a mountain of “disgusting” rubbish by the well-used scenic canal on the edge of Market Harborough.
The “eco-criminals” have tipped the pile of waste on to the canal bank and towpath just feet from Greenacres travellers’ site to the north of the town.
They have struck again less than a year after household and building rubbish along with human excreta was piled up on the same spot.
The incident sparked a multi-agency investigation last spring.
And Harborough District Council ended up slapping two special notices on the Canal & River Trust and four notices on the owners of two plots at Greenacres warning them to tidy up the land.
Now campaigner Peter Pollak, 76, is demanding urgent new action after he tipped off the Harborough Mail about the latest “onslaught” on the local environment.
“This is nothing short of despicable, it’s absolutely disgusting.
“We had to fight so hard last March to get the first lot of stinking trash and garbage removed and now it’s happened again,” said Peter, of the Open Spaces group, the UK’s oldest leading conservation society.
“I cannot believe that this deplorable crime is being committed all over again.
“I was walking along by the canal with my wife Fran when we spotted this terrible mess the other day.
“It really is an ugly blot on the landscape.
“Domestic and building rubbish has been scattered all over – and there’s at least one bike been dumped too.
“We were horrified to see this horrible sight,” said Peter, a retired insurance surveyor and devoted lifelong hiker.
“It looks as if it’s just been thrown over the fence at the travellers’ site at Greenacres.
“I immediately alerted Harborough District Council and am calling on them to act now alongside the Canal & River Trust.
“The people who are doing this should be ashamed.
“This is a blatant eco-crime and the irresponsible fools who think this is all right should be punished and made to pay.
“This sort of scandalous onslaught against the environment has a savage impact on wildlife and nature as well,” insisted Peter, who lives in Market Harborough.
“Runners, walkers and cyclists go along that canal path every day.
“It’s a stunning slice of our countryside on the outskirts of Market Harborough - and we should be doing all we can to defend and protect it.
“This is entirely inexcusable and I’m sick of it.”
Today fuming Cllr Phil King, who leads Harborough council, told the Mail: “This is truly awful, it’s horrendous.
“I want the people who are doing this to stop doing it now.
“And I would tell them to come and help clean up their mess as well – that would be even better.
“Waste does not dissolve, it doesn’t just decompose and go away,” said Cllr King.
“How does anyone think it’s OK to tip this rubbish when they should be doing it properly and legally?
“It’s very disappointing that we are confronting this tipping problem on that stretch of the canal at Market Harborough again after having to sort it out last spring.
“We are striving and working non-stop day in day out to keep Harborough clean, green and beautiful.
“But we can’t fight this battle all by ourselves, we need all the help from the people of our district that we can get.”
Cllr Phil Knowles, who heads up the Liberal Democrats on Harborough council, said: “This isn’t good enough.
“In fact it’s a slap in the face for our entire community in and around Market Harborough.
“Our council has to take swift and urgent action to tackle this issue now.
“Those responsible have to be brought to book.
“This sort of fly-tipping is totally intolerable and it’s dangerous – particularly to those being forced to clear it up,” stressed Cllr Knowles.
“The council has to take the necessary enforcement action to clean up our canal.
“And I’d urge anyone with any information about the offenders to pass that on to the council now so that they face the consequences.”
Harborough council said they are now working with the Canal & River Trust – which operates the Grand Union Canal – to remove the pile of junk.
Cllr Jonathan Bateman, Harborough council’s Cabinet lead for Planning, Environment & Waste, said: “We believe this has become visible due to less vegetation at this time of year and are liaising with the Canal and River Trust with a view to them assisting with this clear up as soon as possible.
“This is on private land.
“However, we will be carrying out a further site visit to look at how we can reduce any further issues.”
The Canal & River Trust has been asked for a comment.
An Environment Agency spokeswoman said she had “spoken to the team and fly-tipping is dealt with by the local council so this would be a matter for them”.