Fly-tip squad cleans up

The Boston Borough Council building.
The Boston Borough Council building.

A clean up project has seen £300,000 worth of fly-tip clearance achieved for just £60,000 over the past four years in Boston borough and South Holland.

Operation Fly Swat is a joint partnership approach to dealing with fly-tipped rubbish involving local authorities, drainage boards, the Environment Agency, housing associations, and North Sea Camp. Boston Borough Council oversees the scheme, which extends into a neighbouring council’s area, and the costs are kept down by using free manpower from the open prison.

The authority’s waste services team and environmental crime team work with the prison to draw up a daily work plan so the Fly Swat team can visit dumping hot spots.

Those who work in the supervised fly-tip team are volunteers risk assessed for suitability, they are prisoners nearing the end of their sentences and due for release and they benefit from developing a work ethic, paying back to society and developing skills and qualifications which may be useful to them in the outside world.

They have received training and have the necessary equipment to remove the rubbish and transfer it for correct disposal, including recycling. Searches are also made for identifying evidence leading to the culprits.

Partners, who contribute to the cost of provision of a vehicle and equipment and administration are: Boston Borough Council (lead authority responsible for operational and administrative supervision, collection depot, health and safety checks and training), HM Prison North Sea Camp, South Holland District Council, Lincolnshire County Council, Environment Agency, Black Sluice, Witham Fourth, Welland and Deepings and South Holland Internal Drainage Boards, Longhurst and Havelok and Mayflower Housing Associations.

In the past three years hundreds of tonnes of fly-tipped rubbish has been collected at a recorded 4,978 jobs. For the period January 1 2015 to December 31 2015 the Fly Swat squad dealt with: 234 single items, 158 car boot loads, 303 small van loads, 159 large van loads, 43 tipper lorry loads and 14 significant multiple loads.

The contents included animal carcasses, black bags, commercial, construction and clinical waste, white goods, other electrical items, green waste, tyres and vehicle parts.