A RIVER has been blighted by flytippers dumping items including a sofa and a cupboard — just weeks after hundreds of dead fish were found in the water by a Ramsbottom man.

Volunteers had previously cleared 42 bags of rubbish from Bradshaw Brook, near Bolton, but the area has once again been used as a dumping ground, which the Wildlife Trust has described as “heartbreaking.”

In December, more than 700 dead fish had been spotted by Gary Fleming, from Ramsbottom, who was walking close to Jumbles reservoir.

Bradshaw Brook connects the Wayoh and Jumbles reservoirs.

They are also connected to three other reservoirs, including the Turton and Entwistle reservoir.

The Environment Agency believes the fish died because a pollutant had entered the water, and it is continuing to investigate.

Volunteers from the Friends of Seven Acres Local Nature Reserve and Lancashire Wildlife Trust had cleared the area of rubbish last month, which included parts of a motorbike, an Xbox 360 and traffic cones.

However more rubbish has appeared, with a sofa, a cupboard and a chair as well as potentially dangerous asbestos being dumped.

The water is home to kingfishers, dippers, grey wagtails and herons.

Alan Wright, Wildlife Trust communications officer, said: “It is heartbreaking to think that all the hard work done by the Friends, our staff and volunteers has been ruined by someone who cannot be bothered driving to the local tip. Surely they must realise that they are ruining Bradshaw Brook and Seven Acres, a beautiful spot for walkers, nature lovers and wildlife?”