I spoke at Camden Council on Monday about a really important issue and one that I don’t think Camden does enough to tackle: fly-tipping.
The Government introduced a new power in May to impose increased on-the-spot fines on people caught fly-tipping from the current £80 to up to £400. Camden has not yet used this power, unlike over a dozen other London boroughs, and I used my speech on Monday to urge it to.
Fly-tipping is a scourge that affects all of our borough: hurting the beauty, liveability, and cleanliness of our community. Over the last three years, an average of 10,000 fly-tipping incidents were reported in Camden each year. And, of course, many thousands more go reported.
Streets like West End Lane and Primrose Hill’s Bridge Approach have become obstacle courses as people have to walk around or jump over rubbish that’s been fly-tipped in broad daylight. Outside my front door, on Flask Walk, there is a regular fly-tip, as there are in several other spots in our community.
It’s hard to catch those that are responsible for fly-tipping, so if perpetrators are caught, they should be subject to as large a fine as possible to serve as a deterrent. Many other boroughs have taken advantage of this new power, and I urge Camden to follow suit immediately.
Legal action is costly and often not appropriate for small incidents. A larger on-the-spot fine adds another weapon to the council’s arsenal in the fight to keep our streets clean.
Camden needs to adopt a carrot approach to encourage ordinary, upstanding residents to recycle more: saving the borough money so it can keep weekly bin collections and won’t have to introduce a new £75 Garden Tax to dispose of green waste.
However, when someone chooses to fly-tip maliciously, that hurts our community, and Camden should have the tools to hit them where it hurts.
For more about my campaign to restore weekly bin collections, click here.