REPORTS of fly-tipping have gone up significantly across the Havant and Waterlooville area, The News can reveal.
Community leaders are now appealing to fly-tippers to have a conscience and stop blighting neighbourhoods and the countryside.
The figures released by councils shows the problem is not going away and may well be getting much worse.
In the latest incident, a reader sent in a picture of a toilet dumped at the Ladybridge Road car park in Purbrook.
In Havant borough, reports of fly-tipping went up by almost 30 per cent from 1,173 in 2012/2013 to 1,503 in 2014/2015.
In East Hampshire, which covers the Horndean and Clanfield areas, there were 437 incidents reported in 2014/2015 – 150 more than in 2012/2013. The increase there is just over 50 per cent. And in Winchester district, which includes the Denmead area, the figures went up by almost 40 per cent – from 433 incidents three years ago to 603 in 2014/2015.
Environmentalist Adele Mallows, from Waterlooville, said: ‘It’s dreadful.
‘What is it with people who think it’s okay? I don’t understand the mentality.’
She said one solution could be to make it easier – and cheaper – for tradespeople to get rid of waste as they are not able to use the household waste recycling centres.
But she said places like the tip in Waterlooville were so easy to use for household waste.
‘They are very helpful,’ she said. ‘It’s no secret – everybody knows about the tips.’
Ray Cobbett, from Havant Friends of the Earth, said: ‘It’s a serious problem and it’s getting more serious. It appears on the face of it we are caring less and less about nature.’
Earlier this year, Hampshire County Council, which runs recycling centres outside Portsmouth, reduced opening times by opening an hour later in the morning and closing an hour earlier and some believe this is not helping the problem.
Figures show fly-tipping is costing Havant council around £23,000-a-year to clean up and £6,000-a-year each for East Hampshire and Winchester councils.
In the past three years, Havant has prosecuted 12 offenders, with Winchester and East Hampshire each prosecuting two fly-tippers.
Councillor Tony Briggs, deputy leader for Havant, said more people were reporting the problem than ever before.
He said: ‘The increase in reported fly-tips around the borough is a result of the high profile zero-tolerance campaign the council is running.
‘More people are aware that littering and fly-tipping is not acceptable and are encouraged to report it. Fly-tipping is totally unacceptable and anyone caught can face fines up to £2,500.’
Horndean Cllr David Evans said councils would prosecute people whenever there is enough evidence.
He said greater awareness of the fact that the problem costs taxpayers’ money could help curb the problem.
And he said residents having house refurbishments should make sure any builders have the correct licence and dispose of the waste legally.
Cllr Evans added: ‘The more people who know it’s a problem that costs them money, the more people will hopefully take steps to either not do it or make sure that people working for them don’t do it.’