A BUSINESS owner has been fined after dumping rubbish and setting it on fire.

A court heard the local water supply had been affected and one resident had been unable to sleep because of chest and throat problems. 

The rubbish was dumped on land off Hollins Bank Lane, Steeton.

The owner of the land, forestry contractor John Pollard, pleaded guilty to depositing controlled waste without a licence and disposing of controlled waste in a manner likely to cause pollution of the environment or harm to human health.

Pollard, 57, of Cricketers Walk, Steeton, was fined £1,500 with £575 costs and told to pay a Victim Surcharge of £150 by Bradford magistrates.

Bradford Council prosecutor Harjit Ryatt said the area of land was owned by Pollard who used it to dump waste from his forestry business. Rubbish from a house renovation was also dumped in the field by Pollard.

After complaints from neighbours living around 50 yards away, Council officers began an investigation and installed CCTV cameras at the site.

Magistrates were shown pictures of piles of rubbish and subsequent fires at the site between March and November last year.

Mr Ryatt said: “As far as the complainants were concerned it was having a detrimental effect on the quality of their lives. Plumes of smoke wafting over the valley left one complainant with a sore throat, sore chest and difficulty in sleeping as a result of smoke getting into her home.”

“Mr Pollard deliberately brought waste to that site and deliberately set fire to it.”

Mr Ryatt said Pollard admitted being responsible for depositing waste at the site but said that some of it had been left by fly-tippers. He also admitted setting fire to it.

Giles Bridge, for Pollard, said that he did not realise at the time that he needed a licence to deposit waste from his forestry business at the site. He has since obtained a licence to carry waste.

Mr Bridge said: “There was no long-term environmental impact and he has now taken steps to make sure he works lawfully.”

Following the case, Councillor Sarah Ferriby, Bradford Council’s Executive Member for Healthy People and Places, said: “This case should serve as a lesson to anyone who thinks they can just dump potentially hazardous rubbish and set fire to it, without regard to the environment and the people who live nearby, even if it is your own land.

“Anyone in business should be aware of the regulations surrounding the collection and disposal of waste and should follow those regulations.”

“If you see fly-tipping taking place, please note down as many details as possible, including vehicle licence plate numbers and inform the Council.”

Fly-tipping can be reported be calling the Council 01274 43100 or online at www.bradford.gov.uk.