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Anglers kick up stink over Irwell pollution
9:50am Wednesday 5th September 2012 in News
AN angling society chief has claimed that overflowing waste is polluting the River Irwell.
Mr Michael Duddy has also taken issue with what he describes as the “dreadful” response from Bury Council when tackled about the incidents.
Mr Duddy, chairman of the Salford Friendly Anglers Society, has released pictures of overflowing skips taken at the rear of businesses in Outwood Road, Radcliffe. He said: “The overflowing waste is washing down the riverbank into the river.”
Society member Mr Eric Owen, of Keswick Drive, Bury, reported the incidents several months ago but Mr Duddy said: “No action was taken then and is unlikely to take place unless the council is pushed into action.”
In a letter to Mr Owen, a Bury Council environmental health officer acknowledged that the waste makes the area “look unsightly” but added: “As the land is not considered a statutory nuisance, the council cannot request the landowner to remove the waste.
“Furthermore, the cost of removing the waste from the banking will be in the excess of £20,000 and the council does not currently have the money to carry out the work now.” Mr Duddy said: “The River Irwell has been making a slow but sustained recovery from its industrial past. The river now supports lots of wildlife such as trout, water voles, kingfishers and otters.
“For the first time in generations it’s becoming a river that people want to walk alongside and is a positive rather than negative influence on people’s lives in North Manchester. As well as the regular pollution incidents from businesses tipping waste down storm drains, there is still a huge amount of fly tipping going on which reinforces people’s image of the Irwell as a polluted drain, rather than the haven for wildlife that it is slowly becoming.
“Most people would much rather have salmon and otters than shopping trolleys, tyres and plastic bags.”