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Fly Swat expands

A multi-agency initiative to tackle fly-tipping in Boston has proved so successful that it has now been extended to cover the whole of the south of the county.

Operation Fly Swat, which uses manpower from an open prison located on the Lincolnshire marshes, initially covered the area administered by Boston Borough Council. Now it has taken in the local authority area covered by neighbouring South Holland District Council.

The latest fly-tipped rubbish to be taken to Boston Borough Council's Fen Road depot. This collection of mattresses and builder's rubble was from one fly-tipping site.

The scheme now encompasses a huge area around The Wash, from north of Boston down to Crowland, near Peterborough, and from Sutton Bridge on the Norfolk border to west of Spalding. Two crews of prisoners, nearing the end of their sentences, now turn out from Monday to Friday to work in the two neighbouring areas as part of their rehabilitation and preparation for life in the community and a return to employment.

A recent ministerial summit in Westminster into best practice heard about the success of Boston's Operation Fly Swat.

Jen Moore, Boston Borough Council's environment and sustainability officer, and Fly Swat launch lead, was asked to attend the event by Defra (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs).

Jen told them about the foundation of Operation Fly Swat, explaining that it tackled the problem of fly tipping using labour from HM Prison North Sea Camp.

Since November, 2011, the Fly Swat team from HM Prison North Sea Camp, has recovered from the Boston area 187-tonnes of fly-tipped rubbish including: 3,711 domestic black bags of refuse, 1,283 tyres, 305 televisions, 157 mattresses, 390 items of furniture, 390 settees and 59 fridges and freezers. Almost 24 per cent of the total has been recycled.

Key Operation Fly Swat partners are Boston Borough Council, North Sea Camp, Environment Agency, Black Sluice Internal Drainage Board, Witham Fourth Internal Drainage Board, Lincolnshire County Council, Boston Mayflower (housing association), Longhurst and Havelok Homes (housing association), South Holland District Council, Boston Standard and Boston Target (local newspapers).