Yate man ordered to pay over £5,000 following abandoned vehicles offences

A car and a van parked on a pavement

A Yate man has been ordered to pay a total of £5,363 in fines and costs after South Gloucestershire Council prosecuted him for keeping abandoned vehicles on a residential road.

Daryl Wallington, 60, of Bredon in Yate, appeared at Bristol Magistrates Court on Monday 13 May. He was found guilty in his absence of breaching a Community Protection Notice (CPN) relating to the storage of abandoned vehicles and was handed a £2,500 fine (the maximum for a CPN), ordered to pay £1,863 in costs and a £1,000 victim surcharge, making a total of £5,363, to be paid within 28 days.

The court heard that South Gloucestershire Council first became aware of Wallington’s activities in 2014 following reports of abandoned vehicles. Powers were employed under the Refuse Disposal Amenity Act which allowed the council to deal with some of the vehicles and alleviate the issues.

In February 2022 reports to the council began to increase again, specifically relating to Bredon in Yate. Site visits were made and seven vehicles were noted that appeared abandoned and without tax. Notices were issued against each vehicle. A number of letters were sent to the council from Wallington which acknowledged the vehicles in question, but he contested that he owned the land and that the vehicles were therefore not causing any nuisance. He claimed some vehicles would be removed soon but appealed for more time to deal with the matter.

The council replied explaining the impact these vehicles were having on residents living in the community due to their poor condition and quantity. Many residents had stated how they fear the area will become unsafe due to broken glass, leaking fluids and the dangerous condition of the vehicles and that they felt the area had become unsightly, affecting house prices and supporting the ‘broken windows’ theory of crime and anti-social behaviour. Residents had also reported they were fearful of Wallington who they perceived as aggressive and unapproachable. The vehicles additionally occupied valuable parking spaces resulting in families not being able to park within close proximity of their home addresses.

As the months went on, the amount of vehicles began to rise rather than decrease, and Wallington was offered a number of opportunities to attend the council offices to discuss the matter, but failed to attend every time, often providing an excuse at the last minute.

On 4 September 2023 a council officer made another visit to the site and issued Wallington with a Community Protection Warning (CPW) and advised him that any failure to comply would result in a CPN being issued. Wallington was urged to co-operate with an explanation why he had so many vehicles on the road and was offered assistance to resolve the matter for all concerned. He agreed that he would attend the council offices and that he would make contact to arrange the time and date. No contact from Wallington was received, and on 17 October 2023 the officer made another inspection of the area to ascertain if the CPW had been complied with, but no action had been taken. A Community Protection Notice (CPN) was then served on Wallington by hand delivery at his address, giving him a further seven days to complete the removal of the vehicles.

On 11 December 2023 officers again visited the site and explained to Wallington that he’d failed to comply with the CPN and would be reported for summons for the offence.

Officers subsequently conducted house to house enquiries to gather the views of local residents to help formulate an application for a Criminal Behaviour Order (CBO) against Wallington should he be found guilty of the CPN breach. At the 13 May hearing, the Courts accepted the CBO application and set a date of 8 July to hear the evidence.

Councillor Sean Rhodes, cabinet member responsible for environmental enforcement at South Gloucestershire Council, said: “We’re pleased to see this case finally conclude after a lengthy period due to Wallington failing to engage with the council about the issues caused by his vehicles.

“The sheer volume of abandoned vehicles in this case has clearly been a serious concern for other residents of the area, so I’m very happy we’ve been able to bring this to court.”

Residents are encouraged to report street issues by contacting the council’s StreetCare helpdesk on 01454 868000, emailing streetcare@southglos.gov.uk or visiting www.southglos.gov.uk/report