Category Archives: Environment

Beechdale tipper caught on the fly

Greenaway capture (picture Walsall Council)
Greenaway capture (picture Walsall Council)

A man who fly-tipped household waste and who was caught on camera has been ordered to pay £1,901.71.

Mr Duane Greenaway of the Beechdale Estate, Bloxwich, was filmed at Rayboulds Bridge Road fly tipping on Sunday 17 May 2015.

Known as a hotspot for illegal fly tipping, Mr Greenaway was filmed at the location illegally dumping 21 plastic bags of rubble and excavation debris removed from his house.

Magistrates at Walsall courts were shown footage of Mr Greenway removing the bags from a white Nissan Vanette and emptying them on to land by the side of the road at the site of the disused cul-de-sac.

See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZFp2kBgDiE4

In mitigation the courts were told that 53 year old Mr Greenaway had removed the debris from his garden to improve access for his elderly relatives and was not doing it on a commercial basis.

On 27 June Mr Greenaway pleaded guilty at Walsall Magistrates Court and was fined £740 for the offence. On top of this he was ordered to pay costs of £ 1,087.71, with a victim surcharge of £74.

Councillor Julie Fitzpatrick, who’s Portfolio includes public protection stated: “These types of activities show a total disregard for the environment and will not be tolerated.

“Fly tipping has a cost to the tax payers and we each have a responsibility to tackle this reprehensible behaviour head on and we will vigorously pursue a prosecution.

“A person witnessing someone dumping waste and wishing to report should record the following details; location of the incident;  day, date, and time; type and quantity of waste; vehicle details including  make and type of vehicle, colour, registration number, noticeable markings and the name or description of the person fly tipping.

“This information can be reported by emailing Clean and Green at cleanandgreen@walsall.gov.uk or you can contact the following telephone number: Walsall Council Contact Centre 01922 653344.”

Cleaning up on the Birchills cut!

The former Birchills Canal Museum, 1990
The former Birchills Canal Museum, 1990

A stretch of canal that passes through Birchills, which is part of the old Bloxwich parish and boasts some of the most stunning views in Walsall, received a makeover on 25 June 2015 as part of Walsall Council’s Big Spring Clean voluntary scheme.

Council staff joined partners from Agenda 21, Ghausia Mosque, year six pupils from Birchills Church of England Primary School and the Canal and River Trust to take part in a canalside clean-up as part of the six week borough-wide initiative.

The old Boatman's Rest mission building (later Canal Museum)
The old Boatman’s Rest mission building (later Canal Museum)

The site incorporates the Grade II listed former Boatman’s Rest building and historic lock-keeper’s cottage, built c1900.  The Boatman’s Rest was one of three in the West Midland canals operated by the Incorporated Seamen and Boatman’s Friend Society (founded 1846). The other two have since been demolished.  The society was established to support the lives of men and women working on the waterways.

In more recent years, the building was used as the Birchills Canal Museum, but closed in 2003 after funding was cut. The canal alongside has become a valuable sanctuary for plants and local wildlife.

Birchills Canal Junction, Walsall (pic by Oosoom, c/o Wikipedia)
Birchills Canal Junction, Walsall (pic by Oosoom, c/o Wikipedia)

The clean-up was initiated as part of a broader aim to restore pride in a canal network that once transformed the lives of local residents.

The young people involved in the clean-up were excited to participate in this year’s Big Spring Clean campaign which helped them contribute some essential activity to help improve their local community.

Bashir Ahmed MBE, from the Canal and River Trust, said: “The students had a great day out on the canal and have really helped tidy up this local stretch of the waterway.

“We have some great assets within Walsall which are under utilised, the canals being one of them, so it’s great to see people coming together to encourage use of a beautiful location.”

Leamore residents group are clean and green!

Leamore councilors and residents tackling anti-social behaviour and lettering (pic: Walsall Council Labour Group).
Leamore councilors and residents tackling anti-social behaviour and lettering (pic: Walsall Council Labour Group).

A new community group has been set up in Leamore to improve community safety and the environment.  The Leamore Community Group covers the whole of Leamore and meets regularly  at the community room of the  Leamore  tenant management organisation (TMO)  in Pembroke House, Comwall Close.

The group has only been running a couple of months but has already run a successful speed campaign in Somerfield Road, working with local businesses to ease traffic problems and lobbying Walsall council on the sale of alcohol when licensing shops in the area. 

Chris Jones, Councillor for Birchills-Leamore, said:  “We helped to set up this group in response to the many enquiries received by my colleagues, Cllrs Tina Jukes and Lee Jeavons.  Anti-social behaviour and littering are problems within the Leamore area so we decided to replicate the success of a similar group that I have helped run in the Birchills area for many years.”

“By coordinating the services of the council, police and the residents committee at the TMO we hope to make real improvements for the residents and businesses of Leamore. But any group is only as good as the people that are involved so we are asking people to join up and help us deliver a better Leamore for all.”

Meetings are held on the second Tuesday of each month and organisers can be contacted on 07713 669706.