Controversial tip boss Sam Hunter has had his licence revoked by the Environment Agency – weeks after he abandoned the blaze-hit site.
Mr Hunter’s company Sam H. Services has been stripped of its environmental permit meaning the former Hunter Group tip in Lockwood has been shut down.
The Environment Agency made the announcement on Tuesday, almost three months after the tip site – officially named Scotland Yard – was abandoned and burst into flames.
Kirklees Council’s Green party leader, Clr Andrew Cooper, who first raised concerns about the excessive build up of waste at the site, said the authorities had failed to act quickly enough.
He criticised the agency for issuing the statement and said: “This comes very much after the horse has bolted and I would question the wisdom of the agency issuing a statement rather than quietly going about its business.
“It’s about how you communicate with the public and this is highlighting what hasn’t been done rather than what has been.
“Action is important but how you communicate that action is just as important.”
The former Hunter Group tip was abandoned in August and a fire broke out which burned for days.
The site is thought to be still smouldering and firefighters continue to monitor it.
In its statement the Environment Agency said the permit had been revoked following a “series of breaches” and meant Sam H Services could no longer operate from the site or accept new waste.
The company had a “history of failing to comply” with conditions and had also stored waste “outside the permitted area.”
A spokesman for the Environment Agency said: “The Environment Agency has revoked Sam H Services’s permit in order to protect the environment.
“The company has a history of failing to comply with the conditions of its permit, and it has failed to respond to advice, guidance and enforcement action taken against it.
“It is vital that waste companies comply with the law so that communities and the environment are not put at risk. We work with operators to help them meet their obligations, but where significant or repeated breaches occur, we will take appropriate action to protect the environment.”
Kirklees Council took Mr Hunter before a judge at Huddersfield County Court for alleged planning breaches. The case was adjourned until January.
The council is now working on a plan to clean up the site and will try to reclaim the cost from those responsible.
Problems at any waste site can be reported to the Environment Agency’s incident hotline on 0800 807060.