Fly-Tipping Is On The Rise In Brighton and Hove

Fly-tipping in Brighton and Hove is on the rise…

Fly tipping in Brighton 1
Fly tipping in Brighton

You may have heard the piece on BBC Radio 2 Jeremy Vine show yesterday (April 5th 2023) about fly tipping and the fact that it is getting worse. Some towns are even employing ex-SAS officers to patrol for fly-tippers.

At Gold Bear Removals Brighton, we have an insight into why it is getting more and more of a problem and why things are about to get worse.

This is because the government recently introduced much higher costs for companies to clear their unwanted items.

“The government has published legislation confirming that residual waste volumes will have to be halved by 2042 in a target based on 2019 numbers. Entitled ‘The Environmental Targets (Residual Waste) (England) Regulations 2023’, the regulations as a Statutory Instrument came into force on 30 January 2023.”

(Quote from ‘let’s recycle .com’)

Fly tipping Clearance Brighton
Fly tipping Brighton

Government Legislation

The method through which the government wishes to achieve its aims is by increasing costs, namely the Landfill Tax to try and encourage companies and residents to recycle more of their waste. The landfill tax has gone up to £98.60 per ton in January with other price increases planned.

As of March this year, Light brothers (a reputable commercial recycling plant in Lewes) now charges £180 per ton of commercial waste when not many years ago this was just £110.

Also more importantly new things have been added to the list of ‘higher cost’ items. It used to just be fridges and mattresses. Fridges because they contain dangerous gases and massive mattresses due to their stuffing. New costs at commercial recycling centres are now £20 per fridge, plus the hazardous waste charger of £45.

Now on the list are sofas, chairs and pillows, which all add a large surcharge for each individual cushion or a chair. This is again because of the stuffing inside the pillows.

In particular: Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), it is a very widely used flame retardant chemical. These chemicals have been linked to lots of different health issues like cancer, fertility problems and hormonal difficulties.

For example, a sofa used to be considered general waste but now incur an additional charge of £40 plus more for cushions.
Dining chairs are now £20 each.

Fly tipping Brighton Cearance
Fly tipping Brighton Cearance


Companies and local residents will not be able to afford these increases. The government is hoping that this will reduce landfill, which it will. However, it will also inevitably produce a large increase in fly tipping.

Companies legally have to go to the commercial recycling plant to get rid of their unwanted items. It is now very tempting for rogue clearance companies to make a huge markup by illegally dumping waste and still appear far cheaper than other methods of disposing of rubbish.

And it’s not just rogue traders either. Because the prices have risen so much to get rid of rubbish, residents cannot afford to get rid of their own wanted items cheaply and may feel like they have no choice, but to put things on the streets and leave them next to bins.

This is a bit of a Brighton tradition and can be helpful if you spot an old chest of drawers or a bedframe on the side of the street, but there are increasing levels of rubbish being left out.

Brighton And Hove Council

The council’s prices have also risen, which makes it even more difficult for residents. Back in 2020, you could get rid of 3 single bed bases for £42. In 2023, it is now a minimum of £60 for three items to be collected.

Brighton and Hove Council Prices November 2020

Fly tipping Brighton 2020
Fly-tipping Brighton 2020

Brighton and Hove Council Prices November 2023

Fly tipping Brighton
Fly-tipping Brighton

Last year there were more than 1,585 fly-tipping incidents reported which is up from the previous year at 1,527. Sadly, with the new increased prices, we can expect to see a dramatic rise in the rest of 2023.