THE director of a Wyre recycling firm has been ordered to pay £80,000 after admitting to illegally dumping waste.
Andrew Park, director of Wyre Waste Recycling Ltd, pleaded guilty to six charges brought by the Environment Agency after a lengthy investigation into illegal waste activities by specialist crime officers.
The businessman, who operates a skip hire business and waste transfer station in Fleetwood, will now have the cash confiscated from him after the Environment Agency secured an order from Preston Crown Court under the Proceeds of Crime Act.
Park has also been ordered to complete 200 hours of unpaid community work.
During their investigation, officers found more than 21,000 metres cubed – equivalent to eight and a half Olympic sized swimming pools – of construction waste had been dumped on farmland in Poulton and Preesall.
Waste from Park’s legitimate operations was transferred to two areas of land in order to be illegally disposed on farm land.
Park had been diverting some of the waste he collected to land surrounding Pitfield Farm, on Fleetwood Road, Poulton, supposedly to be turned into compost and other waste to a site at Lancaster Road, Preesall, supposedly for use as construction material.
Neither site had suitable permissions in place to allow them to accept the types of waste sent to them.
Investigations found Park, through his company Park Organic Farms Ltd, was supposedly carrying out a composting operation on waste at Pitfield Farm.
But officers found the waste was not being composted or was not suitable for composting as it contained significant quantities of plastic and metals.
Some of the waste was being ploughed into fields and none of the activities taking place were covered by the authorisations he had registered with the Environment Agency.
There were also pools of leachate found around the site, all with the potential to pollute local rivers and streams.
Steve Molyneux, environment manager for the Environment Agency, said: “This case shows waste crime doesn’t pay.
“Mr Park was aware of the rules and regulations. The penalties imposed by the courts show should send a clear message to other illegal operators that we will chase after tough penalties if you fall outside of the law.”