Farm Ireland

Friday 24 November 2017

'Bed, TVs and mattresses have been dumped on my farm'

William Grogan cleaning some of the rubbish dumped on his farm in Co Wicklow.
William Grogan cleaning some of the rubbish dumped on his farm in Co Wicklow.

Ken Whelan

The fly-tipping problems around Baltinglass in Co Wicklow are typical of those experienced in many rural areas.

"It is simply terrible and continuous," says livestock farmer, William Grogan who farms at Slaney Park Farm between Baltinglass and Kiltegan.

What frustrates him most is the fact that much of the fly-tipping involves recyclable materials.

"Beds, TVs and mattresses have been tipped onto my farm and neighbours' farms regularly over the past few years, along with scrap, oil, bottles and cans. It makes you wonder about what kind of people are doing this type of thing.

"And when we clear them up it starts all over again," said William. "I have had glass, cans and clothes thrown onto my land all of which are dangerous to my animals if ingested," he told the Farming Independent.

Two years ago farmers and residents in Kiltegan and Baltinglass decided to tackle the problem and set up their Clean Area committee.

"Wicklow Co Council do what they can but I don't think they have the money to deal with this problem so we as a community decided it was time to take action.

"We had a clean-up of the area a few weeks ago in which farmers, residents and people who travel to Dublin to work participated. We lifted 7t of this rubbish from the roads around Kiltegan and a further 6 tonnes in the outlying areas," he added.

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The group have now decided to join the Pure Mile conservation group, which is funded by the local authorities in charge of the Wicklow and Dublin Mountains, and have undertaken a dumping alert scheme for the region.

"Myself and my neighbour Abe Carpenter have given an undertaking to keep an eye on the two miles of road which border our farms and we have put up signs warning the dumpers that they are being watched."

He adds that opportunist dumpers, both from the general locality and from considerable distances away, are to blame for the problem.

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