New council scheme to help Leeds residents avoid illegal waste removers: LAWCS logo

19 Mar 2024

New council scheme to help Leeds residents avoid illegal waste removers

Bin collections/waste services Flytipping

A new scheme has been launched to help Leeds residents dodge the rogue traders dumping their waste illegally and landing them with hefty fines.

As shock figures reveal up to 60% of waste carriers could be operating illegally, Leeds City Council has announced the Leeds Accredited Waste Carrier Scheme (LAWCS), to help Leeds residents find someone local, legal and responsible to take away their waste away.

Fly tipping is a national problem that has been reducing in Leeds year on year, but residents have been warned they could still be taking a risk when choosing a provider.

More than half of those offering the service could be operating illegally according to a study by Material Focus, dumping waste in country roads, back alleys and car parks around the city creating an eyesore as well as attracting rats and antisocial behaviour.

Choosing a non-licensed waste carrier could also lead to a hefty fine for those hiring an illegal firm, as everyone has a duty of care to dispose of their waste responsibly. In the last 12 months, 12 people in Leeds were prosecuted for not choosing a licensed carrier.

One of these was a Farnley resident who paid a waste collector found on Facebook £150 to remove waste from their property. When the Serious Environmental Crime Team found the waste dumped illegally, the resident couldn’t provide details of who had removed the waste and hadn’t checked if they held a licence.

Hit with a £200 fine which they failed to pay, they were prosecuted and had to pay over £1,000 including costs and victim surcharges.

The Council also crushed 10 vans used for fly tipping in the last 12 months.

With the new LAWCS, residents can easily find a list of accredited waste carriers, where the council has undertaken additional background checks and vetting, including intelligence shared from the police and other local authorities before the waste carrier is given the ‘accredited’ status.

Councillor Mohammed Rafique, Leeds City Council's executive member for climate, energy, environment and green space, said: “We’re thrilled to be launching this new scheme to support everyone in Leeds to easily find a trustworthy and legal business to remove their waste and not fall foul of the law.

“I’m proud of the work we’re doing to combat fly tipping in Leeds, showing a zero-tolerance approach to all environmental crime.

“With the LAWCS, we hope to shrink the marketplace for illegal waste carriers that contribute to fly tipping and make it easy for people to fulfil the duty of care to dispose of their waste correctly.

“Please think twice about just hiring anyone from social media to take away your home or garden waste. If you see a local business offering services, check to see if they’ve got the accredited waste carrier logo and check their details at

“If you’re a responsible waste carrier, we’d be glad to have you join this free scheme that puts your checked and vetted business in-contact with local customers.”

Find out more about LAWCS and sign up at

For media enquiries contact:

Leeds City Council Communications team