Roadside litter: Does anyone care?

Written by: Geraldine Faulkner | Published:
Hi Geraldine The maddening thing is road side and open space litter is mostly dry recyclable items ...

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I haven't mentioned roadside litter for a while so felt it was time for an update on efforts made to get my local authority in Andover, Hampshire, to literally 'clean up their act' along roads leading in and out of the town.

After weeks of badgering Test Valley Borough Council and weeks of hearing them promise that 'something is going to be done soon', there has been a slight improvement along part of the A303 but sadly it's not long until you come across another litter-encrusted section of the dual carriageway.

And predictably, an appointment between my other half and Sir George Young produced no results except a letter from the Department of Transport stating its anti-litter policy.

Thank you, we don't really need reminding that litter is 'undesirable', we were asking you to do something about it.

Talk about being fobbed off by a mealy-mouthed civil servant, eh?

With the lead-up to May 7, wouldn't it be great if the political parties made practical suggestions (which they were made to stick to once they're in office) on issues such as roadside litter. No one questions the importance of defence, education and NHS, but wouldn't it be great if one of the political parties tackled the issue of roadside litter.

A look at Labour's and the Conservative parties 2015 manifestos produced the following nuggets that were as close as damn it to the issue of roadside litter:

"We feel passionately about our local landscapes, our open spaces and wildlife. Land and nature are part of our common home and inheritance, and they contribute to our sense of identity. In a globalised world, our local environment provides us with a sense of place and belonging," states the Labour manifesto.

Here is what the Tories promise: "We will spend £3 billion from the Common Agricultural Policy to enhance England's countryside over the next five years, enabling us, among other things, to clean up our rivers and lakes, protect our stonewalls and hedges, and help our bees to thrive."

But what about cleaning up the litter on our roads?

It makes me think of Hans Christian Andersen's tale about the emperor's new clothes? Are there only a few of us who notice the sorry state of UK roads and do the long-winded bags of hot air who pass for today's politicians not notice the litter-strewn roads? Or sadder still, is it now so much a part of modern life that it is no longer noticed?


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Hi Geraldine
The maddening thing is road side and open space litter is mostly dry recyclable items such as tin ,glass ,plastic bottles ect.
There are light weight trollies on the market which would allow the separation of materials .instead we have operatives collecting in black plastic bags mixed waste which then goes to an incinerator where we get charged gate fees .as a district council .Councils will not change such practices until there is a penalty for not recycling on street waste and operators that have facilities that could segregate such wastes are rewarded for the additional product they recycle or recover from the waste stream.

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Very good point. The A23 heading north from Brighton is in a shocking state - litter everywhere. All become more evident since they cut back the trees. But no-one seems to be do anything to clear it up...

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