Unauthorised dumping angers Newtown residents

February 23, 2010

By Brónagh Murphy

Residents living on a rural road on the outskirts of Newtownhamilton are enraged that their area is being used as a ‘convenient dumping ground.’

For years, residents on the Cold Brae Road have endured unauthorised dumping close to their homes.  Everything from household waste to animal carcasses have often been found discarded along the roadside.

However, in the latest incident which occurred last weekend, it appears that a lorry-load of waste was dumped along the road.  Construction debris, clothes and household rubbish were found discarded at the entrance to the Cold Brae Forest, just a short distance from the main road.  The debris was not confined to the lay-by, but had spilled onto the road and scattered for some distance.  It’s also believed documents found in the refuse may help identify those responsible.

Further along the road lie the carcasses of several dead animals, including a sheep and a dog.  Residents, worried about the obvious health risks, are particularly concerned that their children have to walk home past these carcasses going to and from the school bus stop.

The area of Cold Brae Forest is frequented by many walkers who enjoy the views and the feckless attitude of those responsible for such unauthorised dumping causes anger and concern for neighbours and those using the facility.

Their anger is compounded by the fact that the Council’s civic amenity site is located less than half a mile away and they have called on the Council to erect no dumping signs in a bid to prevent such activity.

A spokesperson for Newry and Mourne District Council said it had recently received complaints about unauthorised dumping on the Cole Brae Road.

Acting on those complaints, a Council spokesperson said: “An Enforcement Officer visited the site and inspected the waste to identify possible sources. Investigation into possible sources of this waste is continuing.  The land upon which the waste has been dumped is owned by the Department of Agriculture who have been advised and requested to have the waste removed.

“The Council is appalled at such indiscriminate dumping in our countryside particularly when in this instance the Newtownhamilton Civic Amenity Site is less than half a mile from this location where householders can dispose of such waste free of charge,” the spokesperson said.