Anger over fly-tipping on problem Mansfield street - and a 75-year-old woman could be forced to foot the bill

A sofa, mattress and a double bed along with general waste have been dumped in a Mansfield alleyway – and a 75-year-old woman could be forced to help pay for its clear-up.

Janice Melbourne has lived on Victoria Street for more than 30 years and said the alleyway between her house and Moor Street has had a problem with fly-tipping for years.

Janice and Michael Melbourne who are supported by fellow Victoria Street resident, Glenn Booth, right, and George Jabbour, left, the Conservative Mayoral candidate, in their fight against charges from Mansfield District Council for fly-tipping removal.

Janice and Michael Melbourne who are supported by fellow Victoria Street resident, Glenn Booth, right, and George Jabbour, left, the Conservative Mayoral candidate, in their fight against charges from Mansfield District Council for fly-tipping removal.

She said: “My husband Michael, my neighbour and I pick up bits when we see them, but it has got out of control.

“There are beds and everything now. It is totally wrong that people dump rubbish.”

After a large amount of furniture and waste was dumped on the shared alleyway, Mansfield District Council has written to residents telling them to clear it, or pay a bill to clear it.

However, Janice, a former cleaner who worked for years at Tesco, Jubilee Way South, Oak Tree, and even cleaned for the council, said she cannot clear the latest tip.

The rubbish strewn alleyway between Victoria Street and Moor Street homes.

The rubbish strewn alleyway between Victoria Street and Moor Street homes.

She said: “I’m full of arthritis. How do we get rid of the beds? We can’t lift it and my husband is a pensioner.

“We have rats again now on the alleyway.”

Residents on Victoria Street and Moor Street have been charged before for waste in the alleyway.

In June, box of used needles was found near Moor Street, while a sofa and other rubbish were dumped in the alleyway.

Martyn Saxton, council director of place and wellbeing, said: “The problem of fly-tipping in the alleyway is an ongoing and complicated problem with no easy solutions.

“The alley is private land and jointly owned by all the properties adjacent to it and so the council has no duty to remove fly-tipping there.

“Collectively they have a duty to remove this rubbish and maintain the alley.

“If they do not, the council could issue an enforcement notice requiring them to do so and, ultimately, if nothing is done, we could remove the rubbish and charge each household or property owner a proportion of the cost of doing so.

“In addition, because of the persistent nature of this problem in Victoria Street and Moor Street, under fairly new anti-social behaviour laws, the council can issue fixed penalties notices to try to deal with the issue.

“This is not something we would want to do and it would be a last resort to try to prevent this problem occurring again.

“We are looking into the possibility of having CCTV installed to try to deter fly-tippers and we can increase patrols by our Neighbourhood Wardens but ultimately the people who live in these streets and use this alley need to find a way of coming together to deal with it collectively.

“We will do what we can to facilitate that happening.”

Mrs Melbourne said: “How come we have to trace who is doing it? How can they say it is us living on the streets, if they don’t know who it is?

“Whoever is doing it will do it again.”