ESTATE IS ‘THE DUMPING GROUND’
RESIDENTS SLAM THE STATE OF THEIR COMMUNITY:
A HOUSING estate in Bridgend has become a “dumping ground” over Christmas with piles of rubbish bags left strewn in the streets, according to people who live there.
Dozens of rubbish bags with rotting food, old food containers and cardboard have been left on the streets of Wildmill estate in Bridgend over the festive period.
One resident who lives on Maes-y-Felin said she felt like she was “living on a landfill site” because so much waste has been dumped outside her home.
The woman, who lives with her partner and daughter, said: “I keep my curtains closed because it’s all I see. It’s like we’re living on a landfill site.
“It’s horrible to look at and it starts to smell.”
But the mum, who wishes to remain anonymous, said that while the amount rubbish being dumped had increased over Christmas, it was an ongoing problem for residents.
“It’s been this way for about 18 months since Kier introduced the new two-bag scheme,” she continued.
“We’re allowed to put out two bags of rubbish every two weeks and there are communal recycling bins, but it’s not enough. Anything more than two bags of rubbish or recycling that won’t fit in the bins isn’t taken away.”
But not only has residents’ rubbish piled up, the resident claims the estate has become a hotspot for fly-tipping.
“People are coming here to fly-tip,” she said “I’ve seen people pull up in vans and cars, empty their rubbish and drive off again. It’s continuous.
“We’re sick of it. There’s always bags of rubbish everywhere and recycling left next to the bins because they’re full.
“Residents try their best to pick it up and bag it up to make it look tidy, but it’s just on going.”
Waste company Kier said it was working with the Bridgend County Borough Council and housing association Coast 2 Valley to encourage recycling and reduce fly-tipping on the estate.
But Bridgend town councillor Steve Bletsoe, who grew up on Wildmill estate, said some residents feel like “they’re living like second-class citizens”.
Mr Bletsoe, a Morfa town councillor, said: “The biggest issue is that there aren’t enough bins for recycling and residents are only allowed to put out two bags of rubbish every two weeks.
“There are about 1,000 houses on the estate and I know it sounds like a lot, but they probably need about four times as many bins.
“It’s collected weekly, but as soon as it’s taken away the bins are full again.
“There aren’t any consequences for those who flytip and leave rubbish on the streets. If Kier wants to tackle the problem they need to enforce their policies and target those who are fly-tipping.
“Residents I’ve spoken to have said they see people coming and fly-tipping in the estate and I’ve seen it myself. It’s just turned into a dumping ground. It wasn’t like this when I was growing up and it’s hard to see it happen. I’m a part of that community and I care about the people.
“It’s demoralising for the people who live there. I’ve spoken to residents who say they feel like they’re living like second-class citizens.”
On New Year’s Eve, a large pile of rubbish off Maes-y-Felin was even set alight. South Wales Fire and Rescue were called to the estate and firefighters put out the flames before the burnt rubbish was moved by Valley 2 Coast housing association on January 3.
A Kier spokeswoman said: “We have been working with Bridgend County Borough Council and Valleys 2 Coast housing association on several improvements to further encourage recycling rates in Wildmill, with measures including increasing the number of collection points and expanding bin capacities. This has already resulted in recycling rates increasing by 10%.
“We are pleased that local residents have supported this new initiative with the majority using the collection points.
“Unfortunately, a small minority of people are flytipping in the area which the council is working hard to rectify. We will do all that we can to assist the council and continue to engage with residents to highlight these new measures.”
A Bridgend County Borough Council spokesman added: “The majority of Wildmill residents want to recycle and are doing the right thing for their community.
“However, a small minority are spoiling it for others, while some people from outside of the neighbourhood are driving into Wildmill and dumping their rubbish there.
“We are aware of these issues and are working hard to improve the situa- tion. In collaboration with our recycling partners Kier and the Valleys 2 Coast housing association, we recently installed extra bins across the estate and moved some of the communal collection points to make them more accessible for residents, but less convenient for fly tippers.
“We also knocked on hundreds of doors to meet residents and talk to them about recycling.
“With weekly recycling collections, fortnightly refuse collections, and the possibility to book bulky waste collections, or take items to the local household recycling centres, there is no excuse for anyone to fly tip their waste.
“Clearing fly-tipping comes at a cost to the public purse. We are determined to reduce it and encourage everyone to be more responsible with their waste, and we’ll continue to work very closely with Kier and V2C to make any necessary improvements.”
Residents of Wildmill, Bridgend, say rubbish bags with rotting food, old food containers and cardboard had been left on the streets