A FLYTIPPING campaigner has slammed a council’s system for disposing of waste at the tip after he was slapped with a £400 fine after he was refused access, despite having a permit.

Christopher Donaldson, from Darlington, is appealing the fine, and said he felt "crushed" after years of trying to make the town tidier.

He was issued with the fixed penalty notice after he dumped an oven outside Drinkfield civic amenity site, in Mewburn Road, when he was refused entry because he only had an electronic version of the required permit.

He said: "It's the 21st century and we're trying to make things greener - why should we need to produce a piece of paper when I have a digital permit?"

He added: "I'm a massive advocate against flytipping.

"The council have flaws in their system and the people who are suffering are the residents who are paying council tax.

"People just dump stuff where they want because they don't want to go to the tip and then it's the council's responsibility to clear up."

The Northern Echo:

Mr Donaldson, who set up the “back lanes of Darlington” group on Facebook in 2015 to highlight issues with flytipping and littering, has been trying to encourage people to take pride in the town and to keep it clean and tidy.

He was granted the free domestic waste permit on July 3, which allowed him to dispose of one load within 28 days, but says he was not told he would have to produce a paper copy.

After being refused access in his work van, he decided to leave the oven on the pavement, but was told by John Wade staff, who run the site on behalf of Darlington Borough Council, to remove it.

He left after things became heated, going home to lodge a complaint with the council, but went back later to remove the oven.

It was at this point a council enforcement officer confronted him and issued him with the fixed penalty notice.

A spokesperson for Darlington Borough Council said: “The system in place has been there for a number of years and has worked well with lots of residents using it who have a commercial vehicle that can’t access the main site but want to dispose of their household rubbish. We are now in the process of looking at digital options to make it even easier for users.

“If the resident wants to appeal the fixed penalty notice that is his right to do so.”