Property Investment company fined for illegal environmental operations

As owners of the site, Kidderminster Property Investments Limited were responsible for the deposits of controlled waste that had accumulated on the site as a result of their lapse security arrangements and overall monitoring of the site.  Much of the waste had been deposited by tenants who rented the site and some of the waste had been fly-tipped. 

On 13 March 2009, officers from the Environment Agency visited Churchfields Business Park and found that significant amounts of controlled waste including scrap metal, waste electrical and electronic equipment, hardcore, plastics, tyres, car parts, oil drums and green waste had been deposited on the 32 acre site.  Samples taken from a sloped area around Clensmore Street was found to contain white chrysotile asbestos. 

Although the site owners were responsible for some illegal activities including the spreading of demolition waste, the majority of it resulted from illegal activities of third parties who had access to the site. 

Problems with site security and fly-tipping generally was highlighted in a letter to the company director in 2007 and they were reminded of their obligations as legal owners of the site.  

Speaking after the case at Kidderminster Magistrates Court, an Environment Agency officer said: “The Churchfields site has been the subject of Environment Agency investigation before.  The sentence is a suitable deterrent to companies who allow others to operate illegally on their land.  The case also demonstrates how we will not hesitate to prosecute when circumstances warrant it.”
 
The company was given credit for the work that had been taken since the incident, to secure the site at considerable cost .  The court acknowledged that there had been co-operation with the Environment Agency during the investigation.

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