A court order has banned the lighting of fires at a Great Harwood scrapyard - and any breach could be punished with two years in prison.
Preston Crown Court granted a court order on Thursday, November 2 making it an offence for fires to be lit at the TH Smith site on Meadow Street.
Lancashire Police say the contempt of court order replaces an application for a closure notice at the site, and have hailed it as a ‘positive step forward’ for people in Hyndburn.
Police say the order will last for six months and that any breach is punishable by up to two years in prison. However, there is one exception to the order - on the evening of Saturday, November 4.
Officers say a temporary contempt of court order had been in place since the start of October and since then there have been no fires at the site.
Lancashire Police have been working alongside Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service, Hyndburn Council and the Environment Agency since they joined together to form a taskforce following more than 50 reports of burning of illegal waste at the site.
A police spokesman said: “We have always said that it is unacceptable for members of the public to live side-by-side with criminal, antisocial and environmental activities that have such an impact on their lives.
“The order will last for six months and the consequences for any fire being deliberately started at the site are now tougher than if a closure order had been granted.
“Since October when we had a temporary contempt of court order in place we have had no fires at the site and we hope this continues.
“We hope today’s order reassures members of the local community that we are doing everything we can to address their concerns. If fire lighting does continue at the site we will continue to work as a partnership, and will use all the powers available to us to ensure those responsible are dealt with accordingly.”
They added: “We will continue to monitor activity at the site and if any members of the public see smoke coming from it, anytime other than the evening of November 4, we would urge them to get in touch with us straight away on 101.
“Today’s result is a positive step forward for the community of Hyndburn, and we would like to thank them for their patience and support while we have been working to reach this point.”