Firm pays the price after piles of rubbish were dumped in picturesque National Trust estate

The field where waste was found dumped on the National Trust Ashridge Estate was being used to graze Heritage Belted Galloway cattle
The field where waste was found dumped on the National Trust Ashridge Estate was being used to graze Heritage Belted Galloway cattle
  • Company fined after its rubbish was found flytipped in a field on the National Trust’s Ashridge Estate
  • The field where waste was found was being used to graze Heritage Belted Galloway cattle
  • Luton firm had paid a ‘man with van’ to remove the waste but failed to check his waste carrier registration details and had no proof of his identity
  • Company hit with £5,319 fine by court but investigation into the ‘man with a van’ is still ongoing

A business has been fined £5,319 after admitting it failed in its ‘duty of care’ after piles of its waste were flytipped on the Ashridge Estate.

The Sokin Group Ltd, of Selbourne Road, Luton, was sentenced yesterday after pleading guilty to offences of failing in its ‘duty of care’ after waste was found illegally dumped at the National Trust site.

Wycombe Magistrates Court heard that back in October 2013, a large amount of mixed commercial waste was found dumped in a field off Stocks Road, Ivinghoe. The field forms part of the National Trust Ashridge Estate and was being used to graze Heritage Belted Galloway cattle, which are pictured gathered around the waste.

A National Trust Ranger reported the incident to the Waste Partnership for Bucks and it was examined by an investigator who traced it back to the Sokin Group Ltd and their premises in Luton.

The company, which deal in the wholesale of ladies fashionwear, stated that it had paid a ‘man with van’ to remove the waste. They had not checked his waste carrier registration details and had no proof of his identity. They provided details about the man later, including photographs, a hand written receipt and a mobile telephone number. An investigation into the alleged waste carrier is ongoing.

Magistrates fined the Sokin Group £2,000 and ordered clean-up and prosecution costs of £3,219.63. A victim surcharge of £100 was also levied, making a total to pay of £5,319.63.

The case was prosecuted by Bucks County Council working on behalf of the Waste Partnership for Bucks.

The Waste Partnership launched the ‘Illegal Dumping Costs’ campaign in October 2003 to combat illegal dumping and waste management offences in the county. Since then, the Partnership has secured 467 convictions against individuals and companies for illegal dumping and related offences. On average, there is at least one conviction per week for illegal dumping offences in Bucks.

According to a council spokesman, the drive has resulted in a halving of reported incidents and a saving of more than £1 million for residents.

Have you spotted flytipping? You can upload details including location and photos online or on your mobile.

The ranger who found the piles of rubbish reported it to the authorities

The ranger who found the piles of rubbish reported it to the authorities

The Ashridge Estate was in the news last year when one of its trees made famous as the Whomping Willow in the Harry Potter films split in half.

It was making headlines again when movie stars Benedict Cumberbatch and Samuel L Jackson visited for filming sessions.

‘Illegal Dumping Costs’ campaign has resulted in a halving of reported incidents and a saving of more than £1 million for residents.

Bucks County Council spokesman
View from the top of the Bridgewater Monument of Prince's Riding leading towards Ashridge House

View from the top of the Bridgewater Monument of Prince's Riding leading towards Ashridge House

Ashridge House

Ashridge House