Fly-tipping: Reporting and removal 

Changing behaviours to tackle fly-tipping


Newham Council is rolling out a series of pioneering schemes to tackle the borough wide blight of fly-tipping. It makes our streets look dirty and cluttered and it costs the Council £3million every year to clear up – money that could be spent on vital services areas such as young people, the environment or housing. Fly-tipping is illegal, and can result in an on the spot fine of up to £400.

Many of our residents share our concerns about fly-tipping and have been working with us to develop a number of initiatives to tackle the problem, with great success. These are now being rolled out across the borough at locations that residents and Council workers report as the worst affected by the illegal dumping of waste.

The Council has worked with experts Keep Britain Tidy to co-design the pilots with residents. Four of the five projects created by residents have been completed:

Crime Scene Investigation tape

As part of the trial, CSI tape was wrapped around a fly-tip, highlighted with a large colour-coded sticker to identify the date, and left in place for several days to show that fly-tipping is illegal. During that time the enforcement team investigated the fly-tip and then crews cleared the rubbish. During the trial the crews recorded up to 70 per cent fall in fly-tipping.

Chalk paint stencil messages

The stencils were put in place when a fly-tip was removed and highlighted the cost of removing fly-tips. The aim of the chalk paint stencils intervention was to highlight that fly-tips don’t just simply disappear, but have lasting impacts on the community. Fly-tips reduced at these sites by almost 70 per cent too.

Targeting the worst hit areas – CSI Tape and Chalk Paint

As these resident-created initiatives proved so effective since July 2020 they have been put in place across the borough as part of a rolling programme. The CSI tape and the chalk paint stencils are now being introduced at a dozen sites at a time in Newham’s worst fly-tipping spots – based on information from residents and Council staff.

Each hotspot will have either the CSI tape or the chalk paint messaging intervention used for any fly-tips for a six- week period. At the end of the period, another 12 fly-tipping hotspots will be chosen as part of the rolling programme.

Roads with timed waste collections will not be included in these schemes because of the more complicated messages around disposal of waste but a new programme is being designed to tackle these.

Empowering children in schools

This pilot was designed to educate young people about fly-tipping and its impacts and the positive things that can be done to keep their environment clean. This led to a 79 per cent increase in students reporting that they know a lot about fly-tipping.

Love your ward weekends

More than 400 people attended a series of four ‘pop-up’ community events held in residential housing estates in Little Ilford and Stratford. They  included  on-the-day clearance of items residents wanted to get rid of as well as  ‘swishing’ or clothes swapping events, repairing of clothes, educational activities from the Council’s recycling team  and beautification of the area through resident created murals and planters.

The majority of those who took part said they would think twice about fly-tipping in the future and better understood the lasting effect it has on the community.

Residents can download the Love Newham app to report fly-tips in their areas and can also report a fly-tipper if they spot someone dumping waste.