‘Can’t get the staff’ – Dalston tapas bar owner blames Brexit for fly-tipping fine

PUBLISHED: 15:17 20 September 2017 | UPDATED: 15:17 20 September 2017

Viva Tapas and Cocktail in Stoke Newington Road. Picture: Google

Viva Tapas and Cocktail in Stoke Newington Road. Picture: Google


Brexit is blamed for a lot of things, but a Dalston bar owner may be the first to hold it responsible for a fly-tipping fine.

Rubbish bags seen outside Viva in Dalston. Picture: Hackney CouncilRubbish bags seen outside Viva in Dalston. Picture: Hackney Council

Volkan Yildirim was slapped with an £830 court bill at Thames Magistrates’ Court on Friday after bags of rubbish from his Stoke Newington Road spot Viva were dumped on the pavement outside.

Yildirim pleaded guilty to the charge, but put forward an interesting case in mitigation. He said since Brexit he had been unable to attract skilled staff at his tapas and cocktail bar – a claim dismissed by the town hall as a “pretty weak excuse”.

Speaking to the Gazette, Yildirim explained: “After Brexit we started having difficulties, maybe it is not because of it completely but I think it is a percentage of the reason.

“People are leaving the country. The people who used to work here from Spain were experienced.

“In our industry people are not taking the job as their main job, that’s the problem. They are students and just doing it to get some money.

“That’s why they don’t pay too much attention to the jobs. It’s difficult to find someone who takes it seriously.”

Hackney Council’s enforcement chief Cllr Caroline Selman scoffed: “Hackney voted overwhelmingly in favour of remain, so like most Hackney residents I’m sympathetic about the potential impact of the referendum result on local businesses – however I think it is fair to say this was a pretty weak excuse for this business owner’s failure to properly train his staff about not dumping rubbish on the street.”

She said that most businesses pay to have their rubbish collected, but some try and save a few pounds by dumping it in the street.

“If every shop did that the impact on our streets would be considerable, as would the cost of collecting and disposing of the rubbish,” she added.

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