SHOCKING pictures and video footage has emerged showing the state of a common blighted by persistent littering and mountains of fly-tipping.

Llanhilleth Common, in Torfaen , has been a hot-spot for fly-tippers and litterers for years.

But one War on Litter hero has organised a fightback.

Jess Lewis, who lives near Pontypool, first took on the mammoth task of clearing the common back in late August, early September, when a small team cleared 40 bags of litter.

But since then, despite revisiting the area regularly with a few helpers and passionate volunteers, and taking away 20 bags of litter every time, Ms Lewis says the problem is just as bad as ever.

Said Ms Lewis: “The truth is we haven’t even scratched the surface.

“The fly-tipping alone is on an industrial scale, let alone the dropped litter. You name it and we’ve found it up there. It’s pretty unbelievable.”

But optimism is ringing out across Llanhilleth Common, following a meeting of key stakeholders on November 21.

Ms Lewis at down with Torfaen council, Keep Wales Tidy, Fly Tipping Action Wales and landowners on November 21.

“We’re all hoping to work together to tackle the issue,” she said.

“The meeting went very well. Everybody was really on the same page. We’re all working on a plan of action for the new year, so hopefully some good will come of it.

“You always hope that these plans will nip the problem in the bud. But it can be a double edged sword. If they can’t dump rubbish there then then will do it somewhere else, and then we will have to move onto the next area that’s targeted.

“Realistically , this is just the tip of the iceberg. But it’s all progress, and it’s all positive action.

“A lot of the time council’s don’t want to know because commons aren’t technically their land.

"But we need their help to move the stuff we manage to collect, so it’s good that they’re getting involved.

“There are enough people who are passionate about their area to provide the manpower.

"Everybody needs to work together.”

Details of the Llanhilleth Common action plan will be rolled out by the stakeholders in early 2019.