Council slammed for lack of action over asbestos danger

A COUNCIL has been criticised for failing to protect the public against the dangers of asbestos.

In April, Colin Moon contacted Central Bedfordshire Council (CBC) to report that material containing asbestos had been dumped on a public footpath close to West Drive on Fairfield Park, just outside Stotfold.

“It is now December and nothing has been done,” he said.

“It’s still there, only more trampled into the ground.

“The area is used by young families and dog walkers, and they are exposing themselves to a potentially deadly killer.”

You may also want to watch:

Asbestos was extensively used as a building material in the UK from the 1950s through to the mid-1980s. It is now known to cause diseases including mesothelioma, lung cancer and asbestosis.

Mr Moon said he contacted the council again in December, only to be told that the land is privately owned and it is therefore not the responsibility of the council to remove the hazardous waste.

Most Read

Mr Moon, who is an electrical contractor trained to recognise asbestos-containing materials, said: “What about the council’s duty of care to the public?

“It’s a public footpath and a popular walk for families with dogs. I used to go up there with my dog and my children, but now we avoid it and go elsewhere.

“The fact it’s just been left there is concerning. It looks like it’s been repeatedly walked on.”

Cllr Brian Spurr, CBC’s executive member for sustainable communities services, said: “Following a customer enquiry about asbestos waste being left on land near West Drive, our Environmental Protection Team carried out a site visit and are in contact with the landowner to ensure the waste is removed as soon as possible.”

The landowner is Fairfield Redevelopment Ltd - the developer of Fairfield Park - and spokesman Dennis Carter said he did actually receive a report of asbestos having been dumped on the Fairfield Park site earlier this year by a member of the public, but that it was made anonymously.

“I went to where it had been dumped and I couldn’t find anything,” he said.

“Because it was an anonymous complaint, I couldn’t get back to the person.

“If there is something which puts people at risk like that, we obviously want to do something about it.”

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter