Steve Redshaw thought he was doing his elderly neighbour a favour when he offered to take his broken-down dishwasher to the tip for him.
But the good deed turned sour when staff at the recycling centre in Midhurst tried to refuse him permission to dump it because it did not belong to him.
But he was determined to leave the machine at the tip, telling staff: ‘report me if you must’.
Mr Redshaw from Cocking, told the Observer: “This rule is so ludicrous it’s funny, but the more serious point is it gets in the way of people helping each other. It is an example of an unnecessary obstacle and I don’t think our local authorities should be getting in the way of communities helping each other.”
He said his experience of using the tip – which he paid for – was ‘unpleasant, tiresome, frustrating and difficult and I think this is the experience of many others’.
“The council has created a situation where ordinary members of the public feel mistrusted and hassled and they also defy simple common sense.”
Mr Redshaw said he offered to take the dishwasher with his own recycling to help his elderly neighbour and his wife, who is confined to a wheelchair.
But he was told by staff at the tip people should bring in their own items or accompany the people doing it on their behalf to rule out suspicions that they were getting paid.
Outraged at his treatment at a time when the government pushes Big Society ideals and urges people to look after the vulnerable and elderly in their communities, Mr Redshaw said: “This is an example of how petty and unnecessary bureaucracy and administrative organisation is unsupportive of local communities.”