A TAVISTOCK charity shop is urging people not to dump unusable items which cannot be sold on outside their premises.

Staff and volunteers at the RSPCA store on King Street in the town centre have reported receiving an influx of unusable items being left in the alleyway to the left-hand side of the property in the last few months, to the extent that rubbish is now being dumped nearly every day.

Lez Parker, a trustee who oversees the shop, said: “When something is in good condition, people bring it into the shop, however when it’s rubbish it’s being dumped in the alleyway that leads to Pinder Court at night as those doing it know we’d see them and catch them out in the day.

“LiveWest tell us the alleyway needs to be kept clear as people use the space as access to their homes, particularly the elderly, some of whom are wheelchair users. It’s not just unsuable items being dumped; I’ve cleared up glass, blood and all kinds of mess. It seems to be getting worse.”

The store have attached signs to glass panels on the inside of the door asking people to refrain from leaving boxes and bags outside in the alleyway and against the door as doing so creates a fire hazard.

Lez explained that she has previously taken action in a bid to stop this from happening but to no avail. She said: “I have previously spoken with West Devon Borough Council about this but they told me as the strip between the shop and the court is private land it is not within their jurisdiction as it only constitutes fly tipping if items are left on the pavement on the street. I will be speaking to them again as this cannot continue — it’s the worst we’ve ever seen it.

“I’ve been in contact with other charities and shops in town such as Sue Ryder and TASS; this is happening to them too but not as significantly. I’ll also be speaking with Tavistock BID to see if there’s anything they can do.”

On Monday evening (August 14), several broken deckchairs were dumped outside the store, with other unusable items left on the doorstep.

Volunteer at the store Rosemarie Crook said: “Things dumped like this we can’t get it in the shop, nor sell on. Despite signs on the door it’s continuing to happen every day. We then have to take it to the skip and get rid of it which isn’t fair. We’re limited for space out the back and our recycling comes once a fortnight.

“We are so grateful for proper donations, which we always welcome, but rubbish or defective items cannot be used. We ask people to think: ‘would you buy this?’ before giving it to us and if the answer is no, then please do not pass it on."