I was fined £22k after running a secret dump but it’s MY land… I live on a pension, I was just trying to help

A PENSIONER fined almost £22,000 for running a secret dump in his backyard insists he’s “done nothing wrong” and is “helping the environment”.

Defiant Raymond Wortley, 76, claims a mountain of rubbish piled high at his house was being used for renewable energy and “helping to save the planet.”

Raymond Wortley claimed he has done "nothing wrong" and is "helping the environment"

Raymond Wortley claimed he has done “nothing wrong” and is “helping the environment”Credit: Paul Marriott

Raymond Wortley claims a mountain of rubbish piled high at his house was being used for renewable energy

Raymond Wortley claims a mountain of rubbish piled high at his house was being used for renewable energyCredit: NC

Raymond let tree surgeons and other workers dump waste for a fee on land behind his remote house

Raymond let tree surgeons and other workers dump waste for a fee on land behind his remote houseCredit: NC

The widowed OAP says he let tree surgeons and other workers dump waste for a fee on land behind his remote house in Crowland, Lincolnshire.

The retired civil engineer told The Sun Online: “I can’t believe the fine they gave me. It’s ridiculous.

“I live on a pension and don’t know how I’ll be able to pay that.”

He joked: “I’ll have to sell something – maybe my body!”

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Raymond now faces fines and court costs totalling more than £31,000 after accepting he stored waste illegally at his home for two years without a permit.

While some of the huge pile of trash was burned, he also left his gate open which allowed fly-tippers in to get rid of tree cuttings, plastics, treated wood and construction waste.

Fly-tipping at the property took place between October 2019 and June 2021.

He pleaded guilty at Peterborough Magistrates Court last week to one count of operating a waste facility without a permit in breach of environmental regulations.

The 76-year-old also pleaded guilty to knowingly permitting others to deposit waste.

He was whacked with a £21,693.50 fine which included the avoided permitting costs and financial benefit that he had gained by running the illegal site.

He was ordered to pay a contribution to prosecution costs of £10,000 and a victim surcharge of £181.

Aerial pictures revealed the extent of the trash mountain on the property, which continued to grow.

But the fuming pensioner insisted his dumping ground “is not detrimental”.

He has been picked on unfairly

Dean Wortley, Raymond’s son

He slammed: “It was all being crushed and re-used as chipping for mushroom farms and chicken fields and to help provide renewable energy for power stations.”

The dad of three with 12 grandchildren lives alone in the property situated out of sight on a corner eight-acre plot down a quiet country lane.

He has lived at the site for 33-years.

Raymond explained: “It was a farmyard and it cost a lot of money and trouble turning it into a plant hire yard. It was my livelihood.

“I retired six years ago and my son who is a demolition worker carried on running his business. 

“Then the Environment Agency stopped it all. They were as nice as pie at first when they came out for a site visit and told us we needed permits for this and that.

“Then they turned against us.”

‘HELPING THE ENVIRONMENT’

Raymond, who lost his partner Wendy to cancer six years ago, and sadly suffers from the disease too, admitted he did store lots of waste and scrap.

But he said: “I was helping the environment not wrecking it. I’ve done nothing wrong!

“I was helping to save the planet. I thought that was what we were meant to all be doing now. It was not a rubbish tip – it was all for recycling.”

He insisted he has made “nothing” from the site as diesel costs and new tyres for his JCB diggers suck up any remaining cash.

Raymond told how he was “shocked” by the court action because for most of the time he did operate with a permit and the huge fine he faces was detrimental to his ailing health.

His son demolition worker Dean Wortley told The Sun Online his old man “doesn’t need all this hassle” and that he has been “picked on unfairly”.

He slammed: “The Environment Agency told him to stop burning so he did, then told him to stop shredding which he did too.

“Anything he could salvage he would sell on for a second use.”

Dean, 53, from Spalding, Lincolnshire, who works from his dad’s site, said: “He’s worked hard all his life and should be enjoying his retirement. Now he’s got all this to worry about.”

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Peter Stark, enforcement team leader for the Environment Agency said: “We take illegal waste activity very seriously and will take the necessary action to disrupt criminal activity and prosecute those responsible.

“Mr Wortley was advised to stop on numerous occasions but continued to disregard environmental law. He is now receiving the consequences of those actions.”

Piles of rubbish can be found at the site

Piles of rubbish can be found at the siteCredit: NC

The former farm is quite literally a tip with all manner of waste lying around

The former farm is quite literally a tip with all manner of waste lying aroundCredit: NC

The massive dumping ground can be seen from space

The massive dumping ground can be seen from spaceCredit: NC

The father and son duo say they have done nothing wrong

The father and son duo say they have done nothing wrongCredit: NC

Mr Wortley was fined tens of thousands of pounds for his site

Mr Wortley was fined tens of thousands of pounds for his siteCredit: NC

demolition worker Dean Wortley told The Sun Online his old man

demolition worker Dean Wortley told The Sun Online his old man “doesn’t need all this hassle” and that he has been “picked on unfairly”Credit: NC

The site had been used for two-years as a dumping ground

The site had been used for two-years as a dumping groundCredit: NC

Peter Stark, enforcement team leader for the Environment Agency said: “We take illegal waste activity very seriously and will take the necessary action to disrupt criminal activity and prosecute those responsible"

Peter Stark, enforcement team leader for the Environment Agency said: “We take illegal waste activity very seriously and will take the necessary action to disrupt criminal activity and prosecute those responsible”Credit: NC

The dump is located at a remote property in Lincolnshire

The dump is located at a remote property in LincolnshireCredit: NC

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