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The Trouble With Rubbish and Graffiti

litterpickIt’s one of the most annoying things to deal with as a local Ward Councillor, as litterbugs or strong winds tend to be the main culprits in making our environment so messy.  I have had some success in getting our contractors, Amey to come with me on a street survey in Bretton South to spot where the problems are and they have cleared rubbish and fly tipping from public spaces where it is identified.

It’s harder with private spaces as responsibility rests with the owner to tidy up.  The council can only take enforcement action if they know about it and if there is a legal nuisance.

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I have waged a war against graffiti on roadside utility cabinets, and it is a real battle to get some organisations to clean up mess from their property – if the property is council owned, I will ensure it will be cleaned up as soon as possible, and within 48 hours if the graffiti is obscene or offensive.  With some companies, it has taken me months to get the work done, but I will not give up until they do their duty and get rid of the nasty stuff.  If you have reported graffiti and it has not been cleaned away, please let me know and I will see what I can do.

The Council’s Cabinet recently allocated money for a spring clean of Peterborough and councillors can now looking forward to a spruce up in March, but there are a number of volunteers who go out regularly and tidy up.   Janet Cox, who lives in West Town, is out every day picking up rubbish and I was delighted to nominate her for a Civic Pride award for the Environment which was presented to her by the Mayor in a special ceremony at the Town Hall on 24th February.IMG_1213

Janet is a real asset to her local area and the award was an important thank you to her for keeping the local streets clean and tidy and for the other help she provides to local people.

In an ideal world those who litter our streets wouldn’t do so.  It’s high time that littering was dealt with both by encouraging everyone to take pride in their local area and take an active part in tidying up or reporting mess via the My Peterborough app, through councillors or by ‘phone to the council.  Equally we should make sure that the new proposals to set up Council enforcement teams will create opportunities for prosecutions of the worst litterbugs, and a few salutary court cases reported in the local press wouldn’t go amiss either.

GET THE MY PETERBOROUGH APP TO REPORT LITTERING BY SMARTPHONE

I just wish everyone cared about keeping our environment clean and tidy.  I am sick of sweeping up rubbish at our local community hall that has blown in after unthinking people have dropped litter in the road.

 I own two dogs and I am forever avoiding and picking up broken glass beer and spirit bottles from pavements.  The injuries caused can be nasty and we really should stop this happening.

Dog mess is another bugbear.  You can catch some pretty serious diseases from animal faeces and dog owners must scoop that poop.  I clear up after my dogs and I am appalled that some owners don’t – there is no excuse for this.

doggy canvassingWhile the Council will have an official spring clean in April/May, there is a great opportunity to get involved in your local area and keep Peterborough tidy.

You can let me know if you want to start a litter patrol and I will get the kit you need to pick up rubbish safely, and arrange for the gathered rubbish to be collected, or, if you prefer, Clean for The Queen is holding three days of litter picking on 4 5 6 March 2016 and is helping local people to organise into groups to get our local communities active in cleaning up.  If you want to get involved, more information can be found here: http://www.cleanforthequeen.co.uk/home/2365

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Andy Coles
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The views expressed on this website are those of the author and not necessarily those of the Conservative Councillors' Association or the Conservative Party.