Fly-tipping skyrockets as 60,000 mattresses are dumped in cities in five years
5th January 2019

More than 60,000 mattresses have been illegally dumped across nine cities in the past five years.

It comes amid a fly-tipping epidemic in England, with nearly 650,000 incidents across five cities since 2013.

Mattresses, seen as difficult and costly to dispose of, make up 13% of the waste illegally dumped over the period.

But landfill sites will overflow within four years if nothing is done to stem the quantity of rubbish being sent there, ­Furniture Recycling Group’s research found.

In England, enough waste to fill the Empire State Building 10 times over was packed into the ground in 2017.

The fly-tipping total in London over five years was 366,087 with Manchester on 91,115.

But based on population, Liverpool was England’s dumping capital, with the equivalent of 15 per 100 of the city’s inhabitants being involved in an incident – a total of 74,909 dumpings.

Leicester, Sheffield and Newcastle were next, each with a fly-tipping rate of nine incidents per 100 of the population. Leeds was fifth at seven in 100.

Liverpool also came out worst for dumping mattresses – 18,589, followed by 17,728 in Birmingham. Manchester’s waste dumped over five years weighed in at 30,000 tons – equivalent to 2,500 double-decker buses.

The findings come after we revealed yesterday hundreds of homes had bulging bins over the festive period after a council began four-weekly collections.

Experts fear if other councils follow Conwy in North Wales, which made the change in September, it could lead to yet more fly-tipping.

Nick Oettinger, managing director of the Furniture Recycling Group, said: “In 2016-17 fly-tipping cost councils in England £57.7million at a time when budgets are being squeezed. It’s a problem that affects everyone, ruins our cities and ­countryside and simply passes the problem on to someone else.”

The Government has announced it is bringing in new financial penalties on householders who fail to properly dispose of waste.

But Mr Oettinger said council charges for collecting bulky items were adding to the fly-tipping problem.

He called on the Government to ensure designers, manufacturers and retailers “take into account the end of life of their products” which would help cut “the amount of fly-tipping we see across all parts of the country”.

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