Get involved: send your pictures, video, news and views by texting ECHONEWS to 80360, or email us »
Basildon Council will prosecute anyone leaving rubbish at fire-hit estate
FLYTIPPERS will be prosecuted for dumping rubbish on a fire-hit estate, a council leader has vowed.
Residents in Bockingham Green, on the Felmores estate in Basildon, have repeatedly found piles of rubbish blocking an alleyway that could be used as a fire escape.
With firefighters set to strike for eight days in a row later this month, Phil Turner, leader of Basildon Council, says he will stamp out flytipping on the estate.
Mr Turner said: “I am disappointed we have instances of rubbish again on Felmores. The estates team have done a fantastic job to prevent this, but where residents encounter such problems, please call the council offices immediately and we will remove this on the same day.”
He added: “There’s no complacency over this, because if we find anybody dumping or flytipping, we will prosecute. They will not just pay a fine, they will pay court costs as well. I make no apologies for the fact they will get a criminal record.
“I’m so angry people would do this after everything that’s gone on at Felmores. There is no holding back on this. We need to make these homes a community they can be proud of.”
Six homes were left uninhabitable after a fire ripped through the cul-de-sac last July.
Homes on the estate are being reclad in a £6million council project to make them safer in the event of fire.
The estate has been plagued by fire since 2009. Eight flats were destroyed in Bockingham Green when arsonists set fire to a flytipped sofa.
The council carried out improvements, including upgrading front doors, to offer more flame resistance.
A pilot sprinkler scheme in seven homes is due to be completed on Friday.
Mr Turner said he was proud his administration had ploughed £6million into the recladding programme.
He said: “A Conservative administration is pouring millions of pounds in to Felmores to improve the lives of our residents, to give them a home and a community they can be justifiably proud of.
“I have committed the council to do what is required to make this happen. It would be nice if politicians stop politicking and get on with working with us.”