The Waste 4 Fuel rubbish pile in Cornwall Drive close to the A20 and Crittal’s Corner has been a significant problem for some considerable time. Over the years fires at the site have caused unnecessary pressures for the London Fire Brigade as well as - at times - disruption for motorists. The resulting smoke, smell and odours drifting across Footscray and Sidcup have been an unpleasant and unwelcome nuisance for local people.
I’ve joined forces with my Conservative colleagues Bob Neill and Jo Johnson as well as Bromley Council, Bexley Council and a number of community and residents groups in a determined and long-running campaign to see the site cleared. The Environment Agency and Bromley Council have taken some steps to deal with this troublesome location but it is important that it is addressed once and for all.
What isn’t right is that this action was needed because Waste 4 Fuel – the licensed operators – abandoned the site and their duties to the community. Those responsible for creating what amounts to a gigantic fly-tip should be pursued to the fullest extent available under the law.
It isn’t acceptable for firms to cash in on waste dumped on their sites and then seemingly be able to walk away from the serious problems they’ve created without any meaningful consequence. Obligating those seeking a waste licence to take out financial security up front would help reduce this risk and ensure that those operating these sites foot the bill when things go wrong. It's important that a situation like this shouldn't happen again.
The main priority, though, is that this blot on the landscape is dealt with once and for all. Action to remove this rubbish mountain and see the site restored can’t come soon enough.