Micklefield residents in despair over 'industrial levels' of litter blown from Leeds waste management site

Residents in a Leeds village have been left in despair after "industrial levels" of litter were blown from a waste management site in the recent high winds.

By Abbey Maclure
Thursday, 3rd February 2022, 2:04 pm

The waste has covered the south of Micklefield over the last week, sparking an outpouring of anger from local residents who have shared pictures of the rubbish strewn across gardens, streets and trees.

James Cook, who lives near Peckfield Landfill Site in Ridge Road, was out litter-picking on Saturday afternoon and was overwhelmed by the volume of waste.

The 46-year-old told the Yorkshire Evening Post: "I had filled up four bin bags of litter and felt like I wasn’t even making a tiny dent, it was really upsetting.

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James Cook, who lives near Peckfield Landfill Site in Micklefield, was overwhelmed with the volume of waste while out litter-picking

“It’s in people’s back gardens, it’s an eyesore for the village and it’s a risk to nature.

"There is a real passion in the village to ensure that something like this never happens again, it is effectively a localised environmental disaster.”

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A spokesperson for Caird Peckfield Ltd, which manages Peckfield Landfill Site, told the YEP that the business is communicating with residents via the Environment Agency.

Local residents have shared pictures of the rubbish strewn across gardens, streets and trees

They did not wish to make any further comment.

In a statement issued on Facebook on Monday, the company said it was sending litter pickers out to the areas affected.

The statement said: "Thank you all who have been in touch who have pointed out the areas to send the litter pickers.

"We have a small team heading out this morning and more will be joining us as the week goes on. They will be seen in the surrounding areas until all the mess is cleared up.

"If anyone wishes to have their gardens cleared please don't hesitate to ask."

But James said that, as of Wednesday afternoon, a high volume of waste still covered the village.

He added: “I know bits of rubbish will escape every now and again, but when I went out at lunchtime I came back feeling a mixture of upset and angry.

“If there’s litter in the village, then fair enough - we’ll pick it up. But when it’s an industrial level of waste that shouldn’t be the responsibility of individuals.”

A spokesperson for the Environment Agency said: “We have investigated reports of widespread litter pollution from the Peckfield landfill site near Garforth, following high wind conditions experienced over the weekend.

"Pollution of this nature is a serious matter and can be extremely distressing for those affected.

“The Environment Agency requires landfill operators to meet the binding conditions set out in their environmental permits. This includes the requirement to take all appropriate precautions to prevent pollution from litter.

“We have been in discussion with the site operator to ensure measures are put in place to collect the litter as soon as possible. Our investigation will also assess whether any further enforcement action is necessary.”

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