Lancashire has the second highest number of toxic landfills in England, according to new data.

Uswitch, a leading comparison and switching service, analysed the Government’s Environment Agency data to discover where England and Wales’ 1286 hazardous landfills are located.

The data found that Lancashire is home to 49 toxic landfills, which is the second highest in the country.

The data also details two Lancashire districts which ranked in England's  20 worst districts for toxic landfills.

The Hyndburn District ranked 13th on the list with six toxic landfills identified within a 73km² area.

The Burnley district came in at 20th with seven toxic landfills identified within a 110.68km² area.

The data also found that Blackburn with Darwen is home to seven toxic landfills.

Will Owen, energy expert at, comments: “The shockingly high number of toxic landfills scattered across the country highlights the variety of problems these landfills can cause. 

“It is down to the local authorities to help identify them and organise a clean-up. Some of these older landfills haven’t been lined before the waste was deposited, unlike modern landfills, which means that the chemicals can escape.

“With the added support and funding from the government we will be able to stop any nasty surprises that could be coming our way.”

What are toxic landfills and why are they an issue?

Previously described as 'toxic timebombs' there are thousands of landfills in England and Wales, both above and underground.

‘Toxic’ landfills contain ‘hazardous waste’ which could potentially pose a health risk to the people and environment in the surrounding areas.

In February, Blackburn residents feared that nuclear waste had been buried underneath an area was earmarked for development.

Councillor Slater said: “The site is located in a Coal Authority ‘High Risk Area' and there are a number of mine shafts along the Grane Road.

“In the early 1950s residents believe a large amount of nuclear waste was dumped into the shafts along the roadside.

“There was no formal and very little informal regulation so it is unclear as to the exact location, amount and what it contains, but sources suggest up to 900 tonnes.

"It is unclear where the tunnels from these shafts are but there is a high chance they run into the proposed site and our fear is the waste could be disturbed when work begins.

“A leak could cause potentially serious consequences to human health."

Here are the top 10 counties in England with the most toxic landfills

Find out more about the research by visiting:


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