New rules mean that fly-tippers who are prosecuted for dumping rubbish on agricultural land can be forced to foot the farmer’s clean-up bill.

The government has introduced the new measures as part of the Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act, which came into force last week.

The measures mean that when a fly-tipper is prosecuted by a local authority or the Environment Agency, the courts are now allowed to award clean-up costs to landowners who have been victims of fly-tipping.

A DEFRA spokesman said the move was “a step in the right direction” and showed how seriously the government took fly-tipping.

The government estimates that fly-tipping is now costing almost 1m a week to clear up.