West Norfolk Council spends more than �4,000 to clear roadkill

THOUSANDS of pounds in taxpayers’ money has been spent clearing roadkill in Fenland.

A pet crematorium was paid a cool �4,175 to gather and dispose of animal carcasses on the side of the road in April, May and June this year.

Peaceful Pets’ grim duties included picking up 23 dead deer from West Norfolk roads as well as several deceased seals, porpoises and other animals.

But West Norfolk Council’s environment portfolio holder Brian Long defended the payment, saying: “Nobody wants to see dead animals lying and decomposing all over the place – it’s not very nice.”

And in a stark warning to members of the public, he added: “We either leave the dead animals where they fall, which would mean dead carcasses being over the road all year round, or we dispose of them as humanely as possible.”

He said the public would not want refuse lorries taking dead animals to landfill along with household rubbish and said: “I think there should be respect for them.

“That is why we choose to pay Peaceful Pets to collect and dispose of them at their facility.”

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The cash paid out to Peaceful Pets covers not just the cremation but also the cost of picking up the animal and taking it back to the crematorium.

Mr Long admitted: “It’s a cost we don’t want but what is the best way to deal with the problem? It would be interesting to see what other councils spend.”

Elsewhere, South Norfolk Council pays around �350 to �400 and Waveney District Council spends about �450.

However Norwich and North Norfolk councils say it is not a huge problem for them.

A spokesman for North Norfolk Council said it only clears animal carcasses when there is a safety risk.