Progress Made in the Battle Against Flytipping

Hammersmith & Fulham sees biggest reduction in incidents in London

Fly-tip on Leamore Street Hammersmith in 2021. Picture: Josh Partridge

January 25, 2024

Hammersmith and Fulham Council has successfully slashed fly-tipping by a higher percentage than anywhere else in the capital, with the local authority pointing to its dense CCTV network as among the reasons for the sharp drop.

According to Government data, the council cut cases of fly-tipping by 32.6 per cent between 2021/22 and 2022/23. This just edged out Newham, which oversaw a 32.4 per cent drop, and was far ahead of the worst-performing London borough, Tower Hamlets, recording a 93.5 per cent rise.

Cllr Stephen Cowan, Leader of the council, said the local authority “will always be vigilant as we strive to make Hammersmith and Fulham the best place to live and work in London”.

The Government’s data on fly-tipping shows that in 2021/22, Hammersmith and Fulham recorded 20,032 incidents, with 1,454 fixed penalty notices (FPNs) issued.

The following year, 2022/23, the council had managed to cut this to 13,504 incidents, while simultaneously dishing out almost double the number of FPNs, 2,863. In neither year were any prosecutions recorded.

Hammersmith and Fulham had the highest fly-tipping rate in England in 2017/18, with 18,652 incidents according to numbers from DEFRA.

Asked what was behind the drop, the council noted actions such as clearing rubbish pile-ups more quickly, discouraging others from adding to the mess, and its teams working together more effectively.

The council’s extensive CCTV network is also deemed to be having an effect on the levels of fly-tipping in the borough. Despite already having the highest density of CCTV cameras per person when compared to all other UK councils, in March 2022 Hammersmith and Fulham announced it would be investing a further £5.4 million to ‘improve and grow’ its network over the following five years.

At the time, former Deputy Leader Sue Fennimore said, “This investment enables us to expand our CCTV network, upgrade where we need to, and take full advantage of new and modern technology.

“Let’s be clear, CCTV plays a huge part in the justice system. The police rely on that system to ensure that criminals are brought to justice. And our work in partnership with the police on this is critical.”

Commenting on the recent Government figures, Cllr Cowan said: “Making our streets cleaner and more beautiful is central to everything we do. That’s why we have taken a wide range of actions to stop fly-tipping which is why we’re getting such excellent results. We will always be vigilant as we strive to make Hammersmith and Fulham the best place to live and work in London.

Ben Lynch - Local Democracy Reporter