News release from 03/12/2020

Investigation into fly-tipped caravans

Investigation into fly-tipped caravans

An investigation is underway after seven static home style caravans were dumped in the South Cambridgeshire countryside – with most of them pushed into a ditch.

The District Council was alerted to the abandoned mobile homes on the edge of Cottenham last week. Five of the caravans were pushed into drainage ditches in Setchel Drove and another one was left on the drove’s verge. Another caravan was abandoned in nearby Lockspit Hall Drove.

The mobile homes, containing personal belongings and paperwork, have been searched for any evidence of who may have dumped them or lived inside.

The Council plans to have the caravans removed by specialist contractors within the next fortnight. Due to their size, this is expected to cost taxpayers in the region of £2,000. The waste disposal costs are expected to be similar. One of the Council’s Business Plan objectives, within the ‘Being green to our core’ priority, is to work with communities and partners to combat environmental crimes, such as fly-tipping.

Static home caravans dumped in a ditch at Setchel Drove, Cottenham

Cambridgeshire Police and the Environment Agency have also been alerted, while the Council’s Local Members have been working to keep the parish council and local residents informed.

South Cambridgeshire District Council’s Lead Cabinet Member for Environmental Services and Licensing, Cllr Brian Milnes said: “This is a shockingly large “fly-tip”, a term that doesn’t seem to reflect the scale of the crime. Whoever dumped these static vans has no regard for the local farmers, the law, or those left with the difficult task of removing them quickly from these remote locations. Those in the ditches increase the threat of flooding so I’d like to thank our Environmental Health and Waste teams for working hard to get the vehicles removed as soon as possible. We’ve been through the fly-tip to recover evidence and have already been given information about their likely origins. I’d encourage anyone else with further information to contact us, in confidence, as soon as possible. Fortunately, a fly-tip of this size and nature is incredibly rare. We will, of course, prosecute whoever is found to be responsible.”

Anyone with information is asked to email

Everyone has a legal 'duty of care' to ensure their household or business waste is disposed of correctly. You can be prosecuted even if your waste is fly-tipped by someone else on your behalf. Always use a registered waste carrier, which you can verify on the Environment Agency website, to provide a skip or collect your rubbish so you can be confident that it will not end up dumped.

If you witness someone fly-tipping, call the police on 999 and report it as an environmental crime in progress. Report fly-tipping that you come across to the Council.