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Call for action over beck 'devastation'

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This is just devastation - and it has to stop.

That's the message from a Middlesbrough Councillor in response to fly-tipping, arson and vandalism blighting a key part of his ward.

Brambles & Thorntree ward Councillor Graham Wilson has called for action to clear up a mile-long stretch of Spencerbeck Beck along the boundary with neighbouring Redcar & Cleveland.

The area near Thorntree Park has become a magnet for fly-tipping, arson, vandalism and broken glass.

Trees have been mutilated, chopped down and even set alight, while off-road motorbikes are both a noise nuisance and a danger day and night.

The beck is blocked in places by dumped mattresses, furniture, abandoned shopping trolleys and even chemical drums, posing a clear threat to local wildlife.

A fence is due to be installed to prevent access to Thorntree Park, but Cllr Wilson said more needed to be done, and urged parents to play their part.

He said: "It's just devastating the damage being done to what is a lovely area, with indiscriminate damage to trees and a terrible impact on wildlife that may never return.

"It's down to kids, teenagers and even adults who should know better, but they just don't respect what belongs to all of us, or understand that we all have a responsibility to look after our environment.

"It'll cost upwards of £20,000 to clean the beck up, and that's why our Council Tax bills go up and up.

"I'd urge all parents to know where their kids are, and to bring them to understand that this sort of behaviour is not only unacceptable, it damages all of us in the end."

Councillor Dennis McCabe, Middlesbrough Council's Executive member for Environment, said: "This sort of behaviour is nothing more than criminality, and it's down to all of us to help stamp it out.

"Middlesbrough's becks are a great natural resource for the local community, but they're being destroyed by this mindless, anti-social vandalism.

"There's no excuse for it, and I'd urge anyone with information on those responsible to help us identify and prosecute them.

"It's Keep Britain Tidy's Great British Spring Clean next month - what a great opportunity for local people to get in touch with Cllr Wilson and help turn the tide on this menace."

Anyone with information on fly-tipping, vandalism, criminal damage and arson is asked to contact the Council's contact centre on 01642 726001 or Cleveland Police on 101. Anti-social behaviour, fly-tipping and dozens of other offences can also be reported online.

Councillor Graham Wilson with examples of widespread fly-tipping along Spencerbeck Beck and around Thorntree Park Councillor Graham Wilson with examples of widespread fly-tipping along Spencerbeck Beck and around Thorntree Park Councillor Graham Wilson with examples of widespread fly-tipping along Spencerbeck Beck and around Thorntree Park

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