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A COMPANY owner has been ordered to pay £1,300 in fines and costs after waste he was responsible for ended up being dumped in a rural lane at Cotheridge, near Worcester.

Malvern Hills District Council was called in after a large quantity of waste was found tipped on land between Laylocks Garden Centre and the junction of Otherton Lane and Bromyard Road, on October 21 last year.

The amount of waste was estimated to be enough to fill a small tipper lorry, and contained items including broken furniture, bits of carpet, an office chair and some paperwork.

Investigations led to Bromsgrove company Home and Gardens 4 U Limited. An employee confirmed they had carried out a house clearance in Worcester and had passed the waste on to another contractor to dispose, of but was unable to provide details.

The company's owner, Michael Steven Burford, aged 33, of Austin Road, Bromsgrove, pleaded guilty to breaching his duty of care under the Environmental Protection Act 1990 when he appeared at Worcester Magistrates’ Court. He was fined £300 and told to pay £1,000 towards the council's costs.

By law, companies that produce, import, keep, store, transport, treat or dispose of waste must take all reasonable steps to ensure it is dealt with properly.

Residents can also be prosecuted if they do not use a properly-licensed trader to dispose of their waste and it is then fly-tipped.

Cllr Bronwen Behan, the council's environment portfolio holder, said: “Fly-tipping is not a harmless crime. It costs the taxpayer and landowners money to deal with, inconveniences the public and in some cases can be dangerous. Where we find evidence we will always prosecute.

“We can all play our part in helping to combat fly-tipping by ensuring we use properly-licensed traders to dispose of our waste, take it to the household recycling centre ourselves or use our convenient bulky waste collection service.”

Bulky waste collections can now be booked online at malvernhills.gov.uk/bulky-waste. Fly-tipping can be reported at malvernhills.gov.uk/report-it.