ANGRY villagers hit out at visitors who leave rubbish behind in the heart of Constable Country, where overflowing litter bins and dumped litter are putting cows at risk.

Dedham Vale residents said they are concerned about the welfare of the animals because they are picking through broken glasses and litter.

It is as a result of people leaving their rubbish next to already overflowing bins which later becomes scattered about the cows’ fields, near Brook Street.

A Dedham Parish Council spokesman said the council is working with neighbouring authorities, organisations and landowners to tackle the irresponsible behaviours of some visitors.

She said: “However, it is our expectation for people to respect the countryside and take their litter home with them.

“Littering is an offence, and visitors are reminded that leaving rubbish next to bin is still littering.”

Gazette: An overflowing rubbish bin in DedhamAn overflowing rubbish bin in Dedham

A Dedham resident, who wishes to remain anonymous, said action was needed including encouraging visitors to be responsible and take their own litter home.

She said: “The animosity of residents towards the visitors is clear, so I decided to do something constructive.

“I suggested a bold bright sign could be created by artists or we could organise a competition for children to try to encourage our visitors to simply take away their rubbish.”

She added: “It’s a shame the visitors are getting a bad reputation because of this.

“They probably don’t realise the impact leaving rubbish by the bins has and may assume it gets collected each night by Colchester Council, which it doesn’t.”

A community group, called EmpowHer, which aims to empower young girls through projects, said it will look at ways of making the area safe and tidy for residents, visitors and the cows.

The litter problems follow an incident in which a group of men posted online images of them trying to feed cider to a cow on land near the River Stour earlier this month.

This led to a police investigation which later resulted in three men receiving five fixed penalty notices for breaching Covid-19 regulations.

Gazette: A still from the videoA still from the video

A spokesman for Essex Police said the incident occurred before the lockdown was relaxed.

“Drinking alcohol with people of other households in fields some distance from one’s home address was not one of the permitted reasons to be out during the Covid-19 lockdown.

“Similarly, neither was giving Strongbow Dark Fruits to someone else’s cows.”