Flytipping has “significantly increased” during the coronavirus period at residential areas, warns Watford Community Housing.

Hertfordshire County Council’s west Watford councillor Nigel Bell said it was “disappointing” to see long response times of nearly two weeks to clear a large amount of flytipped items at the garages on Croxley View, which is part of the Holywell Estate.

Mattresses, tyres, remains of trees and general waste have surrounded the site in the past few weeks.

While much of it has been cleared since reporting it to the housing association on May 22, the remains of trees are still left behind at the garages.

Cllr Bell admitted that the closure of Hertfordshire’s recycling centres played a big part in the rise of flytipping at the site during the coronavirus lockdown.

Watford Observer: Watford Observer:

Some of the other items which have since been cleared up.

Twelve recycling centres in Hertfordshire have since reopened for “essential visits”, including the Waterdale and Rickmansworth sites, but it is believed long queuing times has resorted to flytipping at certain spots.

Cllr Bell explained that the items left behind has encouraged vandalism, and residents have left “doors open” as they do not wish to use the site at the moment.

He said: “It is disappointing and I know annoying to residents that this fly-tipping and other examples are still there, especially as I was told by residents that this was dumped by a lorry over two weeks ago in broad daylight.

“For their peace of mind, we need the association to urgently clean the Holywell up now as lockdown is eased, and the council and the association need to look at cameras and better enforcement.”

Watford Observer: Watford Observer:

More items which were flytipped and since cleared.

Ben Johnson, the director of operations at Watford Community Housing, emphasised that they are trying to clear reported sites as soon as possible, but a large influx of flytipping during lockdown has made it difficult to attend quickly.

He said: “Flytipping has increased significantly during the coronavirus crisis as a result of waste recycling centres having been closed to the public, so we are working hard to address incidents as quickly as we can across all our neighbourhoods.

“We would ask people in our communities to bear with us, as this is currently taking a bit longer than usual.

“This is because of the high number of cases and the additional challenges with disposing of flytipped items over recent weeks – particularly with commercial waste disposal sites having been closed and social distancing guidelines making it difficult for our staff and contractors to deal with larger items safely.

“We are arranging for the site at Croxley View to be cleared as soon as possible and we will also be securing the site to deter would-be flytippers in future.

“Flytipping is a crime and we would encourage people to remain vigilant and report any incidents and information to us so that we can take action.”