I always thought the best way to discourage people from dropping litter was to supply bins for them to put it in. Not according to Test Valley Borough Council. They have recently refused a request for an additional bin outside King Arthur’s Hall.
I raised this at last week’s council meeting when I asked the following question of the cabinet member responsible for environment.
The Council’s corporate plan includes six SCHEME priorities including -Protecting and enhancing the environment with “targeted improvements to create cleaner safer neighbourhoods, promoting pride in the local environment” and – Maximising capacity and impact by “increasing community engagement and understanding of customer and community needs”
An important way of creating cleaner and safer neighbourhoods would be to increase the number of litter bins especially in areas where local residents have requested them. I was surprised therefore to hear that a recent request for an additional litter bin outside King Arthurs Hall a COMMUNITY facility in Alamein ward was turned down because of costs and that the borough is cutting down on the number of litter bins due to the “high cost to install and refurbish them.”
I am further led to understand that officers believe that litter in the area can be best dealt with by litter picking rather than with a bin. Can the portfolio holder advise me how such a decision meets with SCHEME priorities?
The response was unbelievable. Apparently it is cheaper for the council to pick up litter from the pavement than to empty a bin because “a special trip would need to be made to empty the bin.” When I pointed out that they already empty a bin outside the shops less than 100 yards away I got the same answer.
Test Valley has allcated a considerable sum of money for the refurbishment of the Atholl Court/King Arthur’s Hall area. Rather pointless if they can’t deal with basic issues like providing and emptying a simple litter bin!