A “horrific” 7ft pile of tyres and commercial rubbish has been dumped overnight in a road near a mining memorial.
Residents were moved to tears by the eyesore near the old Minnie Pit in Staffordshire, saying it had put a dampener on their VE Day celebrations.
It was discovered around 07:00 BST by Christine Robinson as she walked her dog along her usual route.
“I just couldn’t believe someone would do something like that,” she said.
Minnie Pit was the scene of England’s worst wartime mining disaster, when an underground explosion on 12 January 1918 killed more than 150 men and boys.
The area has now been turned into a memorial, and sits amongst countryside regularly being used for people’s daily lockdown walks.
Wendy Lear, who runs The Lodge caravan park, next to the memorial in Red Hall Lane, Halmer End, said there had been bouts of fly-tipping there in recent years.
“This is the worst I have ever seen – it’s absolutely huge. A binman came by this morning and he said he was 6ft 1in, and it towered above him.
“One man who does a lot for the memorial was left in tears over it, he couldn’t believe it had happened, especially on VE Day.
“The police came down to see it and told us not to go anywhere near it because there is liquid leaking from it and it could be acid.”
Councillor Susan Moffat said she had been in touch with Newcastle-under-Lyme Borough Council about removing the waste, which is usually disposed of by a specialist firm.
She described it as “social vandalism”.
“This is a professional job. It has been cynically dumped where it is causing a hazard, distress and on a bank holiday,” she said.
“I am very concerned about it, if there is an emergency, vehicles wouldn’t be able to get past.”
She has asked residents to come forward if they had seen a large lorry in the area, which is next to Bateswood Nature Reserve, or had any relevant CCTV.