Garden centre owner fined over “toxic” bonfire in Kings Bromley

The owner of a garden centre in Kings Bromley has been fined more than £1,000 after a “toxic” bonfire caused dark plumes of smoke.

Andrew Phillips, 58, pleaded guilty at Stafford Magistrates’ Court to causing or permitting the emission of dark smoke as a result of burning material at Bromley Hayes Garden Centre on Shaw Lane, near Kings Bromley.

Lichfield District Council started legal proceedings after the incident in March. Officials found a bonfire which included materials such as plastic, household waste and a wheelchair.

Philips was ordered to pay a fine of £660, court costs of £500 and a victim surcharge of £66 – a total of £1,226.

Councillor Colin Greatorex, Cabinet member for health, said: “Protecting the public from harmful emissions is a duty we take very seriously.

“Burning any materials that can result in toxic fumes is not acceptable, especially for a business, so we’re pleased the court took the offence seriously and found in our favour.

“We hope this case will act as an example to others to avoid polluting the air through illegally burning waste material.”

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