'˜Our village is Hastings' dumping ground'

A resident has labelled Three Oaks as '˜Hastings' dumping ground' after years of large domestic appliances being dumped in the village.

Tuesday, 4th September 2018, 4:19 pm
Updated Tuesday, 4th September 2018, 4:27 pm
An example of some of the fly-tipping in Three Oaks. Picture: Ross Lewis

Ross Lewis, who moved to Three Oaks nearly three years ago, said the worst hotspot for such fly-tipping was around the Westfield and Three Oaks junctions where Butchers Lane, Rock Lane and Eight Acre Lane link to make a triangle.

In his time living in the village, Mr Lewis said he has noticed ‘significant fly-tipping’ of items including mattresses, garden debris, sofas and, on one occasion, a Stella Artois pub fridge.

He added: “The tipping struck me as on a commercial scale – or perhaps more ‘man with a van’.

Ross Lewis said Three Oaks has become Hastings' dumping ground. Picture: Ross Lewis

“The more it was happening the more I realised that my village was being used as a regular site, probably by one or two repeat offenders.

“This wasn’t a couple of one-off incidents, but one or two of the same people returning again and again to the quiet country lanes of the area to ditch their ‘collections’ knowing they’d get away with it. And they have been getting away with it.”

Frustrated by the continuous dumping of rubbish, Mr Lewis decided to seek the assistance of Rother District Council.

He added: “I started to take pictures of the tips as they happened and tweeted the council. I wanted it online so others could see what was happening and see Rother’s responses.

Large domestic appliances have been among the items dumped in Three Oaks. Picture: Ross Lewis

“I was told to report the sightings on FixMyStreet – an app that links directly to their collections team to deal with. Which I did. But because of the frequency and brazen nature of the dumping, it was countermeasures I was interested in – how to stop it, not simply clean up each and every time. How much money is paid to an outside agency every time a broken chest of drawers appeared at the side of the road to collect? What preventative or investigative measures were in place?

“I’ve every sympathy for a council stripped of resources, but there is a designated team to deal with this issue, and every other week something is dumped, and every other week it’s collected.

“It’s not stopping; nothing is done and the locals are angry and disgusted. Three Oaks – Hastings’ dumping ground.”

A spokesman said Rother District Council is aware of an issue with fly-tipping in the area and is ‘keeping an eye on the location’.

The spokesman added: “We examine any material dumped for evidence which might support a prosecution and we do prosecute whenever we have sufficient evidence to support a case. We have obtained some evidence relating to the fly-tipping in this location and our enquiries are continuing.

“Fly-tipping is a criminal offence which carries a maximum penalty of five years’ imprisonment or an unlimited fine. We’d urge anyone with any information about fly-tipping in Rother to contact us so further enquiries can be made.”

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