PEOPLE in Leicester are being asked to think of their neighbours and not risk breaking the law by burning rubbish in their gardens.
The spring and summer months generally see an increase in garden bonfires and a rise in the number of complaints received by Leicester City Council’s noise and pollution control team.
During the last week, the council has received a higher than normal amount of complaints about people burning waste in their back gardens.
Burning garden waste produces smoke that can be a nuisance to neighbours and long-term exposure can be harmful to health. It can also present a serious fire risk and flames can spread to fences, sheds or buildings.
Household waste should not be burned at all and those who do it could be committing an offence and risk being prosecuted.
Cllr Adam Clarke, deputy city mayor for environment, said: “We have begun to see a rise in the number of calls we’re receiving from people concerned about their neighbours burning waste.
“With most of Leicester now helping to protect the NHS by staying at home, the freedom to use their gardens for fresh air is really important. This is a time to think of your neighbours and cut out the bonfires.
“Although we have had to temporarily close our recycling centres, Leicester’s weekly waste collections and green waste service are currently running as normal. There’s really no reason for people to burn rubbish of any kind and composting is much better for the environment.”
“We’d urge all Leicester residents to stop burning garden waste as we all pull together to get through the virus outbreak.”
Most garden waste can be composted to create a nutrient-rich fertilizer for next year's gardening.
Home composters are available at a discounted price at www.getcomposting.com
Anyone who is concerned about pollution from a garden bonfire can report this to the city council’s pollution control team online at my.leicester.gov.uk