Firth Park: Sheffield Council issues ultimatum over eyesore fly-tipping at empty house near school

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It has been called a health hazard

This is the state of an empty house in Sheffield which has been turned into an eyesore and potential 'health hazard' by repeated fly-tipping.

Sheffield Council says it has written to the landlord of the property at the corner of Wheldrake Road and Hucklow Road, opposite Hucklow Primary School, in Firth Park, urging them to remove the rubbish as soon as possible.

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Fly-tipping at an empty house in Firth Park, Sheffield. The council says it has written to the landlord of the property, at the corner of Wheldrake Road and Hucklow Road, urging them to remove the rubbish as soon as possible. If the owner fails to act, the council says, it will get the waste removed and send them the bill.Fly-tipping at an empty house in Firth Park, Sheffield. The council says it has written to the landlord of the property, at the corner of Wheldrake Road and Hucklow Road, urging them to remove the rubbish as soon as possible. If the owner fails to act, the council says, it will get the waste removed and send them the bill.
Fly-tipping at an empty house in Firth Park, Sheffield. The council says it has written to the landlord of the property, at the corner of Wheldrake Road and Hucklow Road, urging them to remove the rubbish as soon as possible. If the owner fails to act, the council says, it will get the waste removed and send them the bill. | Dawn Usher

If the owner fails to act, the council says it will remove the waste itself and send them the bill.

There is no suggestion the landlord is responsible for dumping the rubbish at the house but because it is a private property the council says it is up to the owner to get it removed.

The rubbish piled up in the front yard of the house was highlighted by Dawn Usher, who lives in Firth Park.

She said the property had been empty for years and she had been reporting fly-tipping there for more than six months.

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"This is obviously a major health hazard, unsightly and needs dealing with," she told The Star.

Councillor Douglas Johnson, chair of Sheffiled City Council's Housing Committee, said the council was aware of the issue at the property.

"We are continuing to do what we can alongside partner organisations to manage this," he told The Star.

"The property in question is currently vacant and has been for some time. The landlord has been contacted and made aware of the current condition of the property and informed they have to remove the rubbish as soon as possible.

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"If those requests are not responded to, the council will remove the waste ourselves and bill the landlord for this."

Littering and fly-tipping 'all too common'

Ms Usher said littering and fly-tipping were an 'all too common occurrence' around Firth Park.

She told The Star how she has to report fly-tipping to the council on a weekly basis and is frustrated that more is not being done to tackle the issue.

Ms Usher called on the council to be more 'proactive' when it came to keeping the area tidy.

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She said that rubbish was not collected from bins if the lid wouldn't close, yet this just led to some people burning their leftover waste, including plastic, creating an acrid stench.

She also complained that she was unable to report multiple instances of fly-tipping in one email to the council and had instead been told to report them separately.

'Council said information sheet would be insulting'

"Unless the council educates people they're going to carry on doing what they're doing," she said.

"A group of residents got together and made an information sheet showing where you can dispose of your rubbish but apparently the council said it would be insulting to hand it out to people coming into the area. It's not insulting, it's just explaining what to do."

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As well as the house on Wheldrake Road, she said other fly-tipping hotspots in the area included the car park at the entrance to the park.

"There are lots of volunteers who pick up litter regularly. They're trying to make the place look nice. Why can't the council do more to help?"

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