THE former mayor of High Wycombe has hit out at new charges to get rid of waste at the county’s rubbish tips - claiming it could lead to more fly-tipping.

Wycombe district councillor Brian Pearce said Bucks County Council (BCC) should have “looked at the bigger picture” before introducing the controversial charges.

In January BCC’s cabinet agreed to enforce charges for all non-household waste – such as construction debris – at rubbish tips across the county and they came into force on April 1.

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Bucks Free Press:

Cllr Pearce said that earlier this month he tried to take an old heated towel rail, metal shower hose and a metre-long piece of aluminium to the dump in High Wycombe.

He said: “I was allowed to tip the aluminium strip and put it in the recycling bin but the other two items, I was told I would be charged five pounds to dump.

“I think that the charges will lead to far more fly-tipping which is expensive to clear up and damaging to the environment and secondly I believe that all this may discourage people from recycling items on fear of being charged - many people resorting thus to placing the items in wheelie bins.”

Bucks Free Press:

An example of fly-tipping in south Bucks

Bill Chapple, cabinet member for planning and environment at BCC, said a “great deal of research” had gone into the decision before it went ahead. He said: “Despite the commonly-held belief that charging for non-household waste results in increased fly tipping, the evidence from other areas that have previously introduced charging showed that this is not so. Law-abiding householders do not start dumping waste illegally to avoid paying a small fee. To be sure that the charging procedures are working as efficiently and fairly as possible, I will shortly be conducting a review of progress so far with the teams involved to see if any improvements can be made.”