An elderly lady living on the edge of Dartmoor is facing potential charges for failure to clear away waste from her land.
In May 2017 she generously allowed a man to use her barn to ‘sort house clearance’. From May to November 2017 this man systematically dumped toxic waste, asbestos, used nappies, plastic, rubble, rubber – many hundreds of tons of mixed waste – all illegally dumped in and around the borrowed barn.
On the 17th May 2018, in Exeter Magistrates Court this man pleaded guilty to 5 charges brought against him by the Environment Agency, in contravention of Section 33 of the Environment Act 1990. He is bailed to return 18th June for sentencing.
However because the dumped waste has been classed as fly tipping, the law states the owner of the land has to clear it up and due to the nature of the waste, specialist teams need to be called in to dispose of the waste safely.
The estimated cost is a massive £50,000 and the cost falls directly on the elderly landowner. A friend of the lady has set up a gofundme page to try and raise the money. She states that “through no fault of her own, in offering to help a local business man, [my friend] will end up with nothing, nowhere to live, nowhere for her grandchildren to safely play – nothing.
[My friend’s] wish is for the small herd of deer that frequented the area around the barn to return, for the land to be clean and pure once again. Hence the gofundme … we humbly ask that the generosity of the people reading this extends to reaching into their pocket – if 10,000 people read this and donate just £5 you will have saved a beautiful area of Devon countryside and my friend will be able to sleep stress free.”