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Environment officers called to the scene found the dead fish along an extensive stretch of the beck between Burniston and Scalby.

The agency is now appealing for information following the “serious pollution incident” and has taken samples in an attempt to locate how and where the pollution started.

Environment officer Stephen Richardson said: “It appears the pollution may have started in the Lindhead area and quickly travelled downstream, with a rapid impact on the watercourse.

“The results of our samples show no indication of what the pollutant was or what caused the fish to die, and the quality of the water is still very good.

“This is a very serious incident that we believe has been caused by a deliberate act. We will not hesitate to prosecute should we find the person or persons responsible”.

Leigh Stringer

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