A Wiltshire mum has been fined nearly £1,000 after pleading guilty to dumping waste on a town centre public footpath.

Lilly Bence, of Bank Row in Calne, was ordered to pay £822.72 in fines, costs and compensation during a hearing at Swindon Magistrates Court on Friday, March 22.

This comes after a council investigation sparked by a complaint of rubbish being discarded on the public footpath adjacent to Bence’s street.

Last year she contested a £400 fixed penalty notice in relation to the fly-tip, claiming that she had been unable to use her bins because they were full of beer cans deposited by people visiting the Calne bike meet on July 29.

At the time she labelled the charge “unfair”, insisting passers-by had been regularly dumping their waste in her bin since January 2023.

This was strongly denied by the event organisers, who said they litter-picked the area “with a fine-tooth comb.”

Wiltshire Times: The fly-tip in CalneThe fly-tip in Calne (Image: Wiltshire Council)

The council has now revealed its officers visited the address a month before the meet and found several open shopping bags, full of waste that was spilling onto the public footpath.

The bags were full of used nappies, food waste, cardboard, drink cans, food packaging and other assorted waste.

Food waste and packaging was also found directly on the pavement, under the bags.

Officers traced this fly-tip back to Bence, who acknowledged most of the waste was hers during interview.

The probe also found she had received three waste contamination warning tags attached to her bin, a warning letter, and a visit by a waste officer before the incident.

After failing to pay her £400 fine she was prosecuted at Swindon Magistrates Court.

Wiltshire Times: The fly-tip in CalneThe fly-tip in Calne (Image: Wiltshire Council)

Cllr Nick Holder, cabinet member for highways and street scene, said: “In this case, the site where Ms Bence dumped her waste was a fly-tipping hotspot and has attracted a number of complaints from local residents, businesses, and the town council over recent years.

“Had she stored her bins in the correct location after collection and acted on the warnings from our officers, she would not have found herself in this situation.

“She also had the opportunity to pay a £400 fixed penalty notice and avoid the court action but failed to do so. 

“If anyone spots fly-tipping in Wiltshire, I’d urge them to report it to us using MyWilts and our officers will investigate and take action.”

The council has invested an extra £150,000 into tackling environmental crime and says it has seen a 125 per cent increase in fly-tipping prosecutions.