Pensioner fined £50 for littering after dropping crumbs from pork pie
A pensioner claims he was fined £50 for littering after dropping crumbs from a pork pie he was eating.
Peter Vipham was eating the snack in Manchester city centre when a small crumb of pastry fell to the floor and he flicked another off his coat.
Mr Vipham, 75, then says he was suddenly approached by two women who identified themselves as enforcement officers and told him he had been filmed littering.
He said he offered to pick up the crumbs but said he wasnt given the opportunity to view the video footage, despite asking.
Peter is refusing to pay the fine and is seeking legal advice.
Retired shoemaker Peter, from Rawtenstall, Lancashire, said: It is a strange world. Less than 200 yards away there were hundreds of pigeons with people feeding them.
If I had dropped litter I would pay the fine, but I never would drop litter.
I remember flicking one crumb from my coat but apparently another fell on the floor. I am against litter 100%. I hate it.
The fine, issued to Peter on Wednesday lunchtime, will rise to £80 if it is not paid within 12 days.
Peter said: We shopped around a bit and were a bit peckish, so we bought two little pork pies for £1 each. We stood outside eating them.
I was walking across the road and was grabbed. I thought it was a sales person at first. It was two women and they had uniforms on.
They had all the gear, including cameras on their chests. It just took me by surprise. They took us to a corner and I was cautioned and told I had caused some litter.
They said they had been videoing us and I had dropped crumbs. They asked for ID and checked it out then said I was being given a £50 fine.
They issued me with a ticket and walked away. It was just incredible. I couldnt believe it. I was treated like a criminal over crumbs.
The crumbs must have been miniscule, added Peters daughter Vanessa Vipham, 46, from Hapton, Lancashire.
Theres no commonsense approach.
They couldnt even see the crumbs on the floor. Its ridiculous. There is no other word for it. They did not give my father the opportunity to watch the video.
Hes always been a law abiding citizen, but has been made to feel like a criminal. Hes very upset. He is a pensioner, who does not have a high pension income.
A Manchester council spokesman said: We would clearly not fine somebody for accidentally leaving a few crumbs on the ground, but when people drop significant amounts of food, this is not a trivial matter, as it can attract rats and other pests.
We will review the evidence and contact Mr Vipham to discuss his case further.