Please No Bonfires

District Council warns against bonfires during coronavirus outbreak

People are being urged not to light bonfires in the Chichester District in order to protect the health of others during the coronavirus crisis.

Since the beginning of the outbreak, Chichester District Council has seen an increase in reports of residents burning garden and general waste at their properties.

“Smoke and smells from bonfires can aggravate respiratory problems, which people with virus symptoms may be experiencing,” says Councillor Penny Plant, Cabinet Member for Environment and Chichester Contract Services. “Please do not burn your garden waste, or any other waste, and be mindful of your neighbours and local community who may be spending time in their gardens during the lockdown.

“Our crews are working hard to keep our waste collection services running as normal, and while we are prioritising domestic waste (black bins) and recycling (burgundy bins), we are pleased to say that we are currently running a full green waste service as well.

“We will do all we can to collect everybody’s waste, but there may be occasions when we can’t reach everyone. If we have missed your bin, please keep hold of your waste and place your bin out on your next fortnightly collection day. If you have any excess waste as a result of a missed collection, you can put this in a bag and place it next to your bin.

“We recognise this isn’t ideal but your support and cooperation is greatly appreciated at this challenging time.

“We will be doing our best to keep our Garden Recycling service going. However, we must treat domestic waste and recycling as the priority so it is possible that there may be disruption to Gardening Recycling rounds. If we are unable to collect your bin, please keep hold of it and present it on your next normal collection day.

“Perhaps also consider whether your green waste can be composted in the short term or maybe sticks, twigs and branches can be used to create an insect hotel. Regular cutting to top the grass may prevent the need for it to be collected. These measures can reduce your dependency on green waste collections for a short period of time enabling us to focus our resources on waste and recycling.”

Residents who are affected by smoke from bonfires should report this to the council’s Environmental Protection team and provide as much information as possible, such as an address; the time of the bonfire; an indication of the items being burnt; and the duration and frequency of the bonfire. People can report bonfires on the council’s website either online or by phone: 01243534598.

The council has various enforcement options for dealing with bonfires, including fixed penalty notices of £100 and nuisance abatement notices.