Guernsey Press

Sarkees unhappy with open burning of waste

SARK is burning household waste in a hole in the ground and Sarkees are complaining the odour can be smelt in the village centre.

Household waste on Sark is being burnt at Les Laches (32614748)

The island’s household waste is normally burnt in an incinerator near Maseline Harbour, with recycling shipped to Guernsey.

‘It’s my understanding that the island’s incinerator is broken and the only option they appear to have is pit burning,’ said Seigneur Christopher Beaumont.

‘Normally in the incinerator waste is burnt at a high temperature and the particulate matter is collected.

‘This isn’t sustainable even in the short term. It’s really not ideal for the island’s tourism industry.’

He said the Sark Douzaine was responsible for waste disposal. It was contacted for comment but did not reply.

Residents pay a fee per bag for the collection and disposal of their waste.


Kevin McMullen, who operates a horse-drawn carriage on the island, said he had been to examine the current burning hole.

‘What’s going in and being burnt is all down to what people are throwing away in their black bin bags. It could be anything,’ he said.

Mr McMullen had seen building materials, such as insulation, among the burned rubbish, and he was worried that some of it could contain asbestos.

Mr McMullen had been unable to get to the bottom of who had sanctioned the disposal in this way.

The waste burning hole has been dug on the east of the island, between the beauty spots of Derrible Bay and the old Creux Harbour, in an area called Les Laches.

Mr McMullen said large bits of ash had been drifting across the harbour earlier in the week.

‘Les Laches would have a lovely view, if it wasn’t for the hole of burning rubbish and ash and the broken sewage works,’ he said.