Agenda item

Crucorney Litter Scheme: Update



To receive an update on the Crucorney Litter Project from the Crucorney Environmental Group (CEG), represented by Peter Jackman, Chairman and Andrea Jackman, Secretary.


Key Issues:

·         CEG is a small group based in Llanvihangel Crucorney focussed on litter picking and litter prevention with the help of 30-40 volunteers.

·         There is an annual Spring Clean event and litter picking is otherwise on an ad hoc basis by the volunteers.

·         A report was presented to the Strong Communities Select Committee in November that contained some challenges for the council to help prevent littering and tackle causes.

·         The project has a purpose of preventing roadside litter through the use of bins and signage, to change behaviour and support the volunteers.

·         Results show that the residents have mainly welcomed or accepted the trial, with a limited number of objections. It is concluded that the trial will continue, removed signs will be replaced and the campaign widened.


Member scrutiny:

Following the presentation, Members were invited to ask questions:


·         A Member asked if there was a community central point (large wheelie bin) where full bags can be stored until collected and was informed that there is no such facility at present.

·         It was questioned if local campsites have you been visited to check their waste disposal arrangements and responded that a community councillor has started this process but it was noted that not all campsites are licensed.

·         A Member raise health and safety concerns about unauthorised campsites and also queried the Council’s responsibility for removing rubbish from them.  The Head of Waste and Street Scene advised that authorised campsites are obliged to provide a point for waste collection.  If an informal campsite is discovered, the landlord is advised of the need for a trade waste agreement.  Campers may drop black bags by bins in laybys believing that is the appropriate place and may encourage further fly tipping.  Campers and campsites can use the Llanfoist Household Waste Recycling Centre (HWRC) to dispose of waste. In response to a question, it was confirmed that the permit system will cause issues but added that businesses should have a trade waste permit.  Changeover days for holiday lets are also problematic as bags can be left out for up to two weeks.  The authority works with businesses to encourage weekly or daily trade waste collection in such cases.

·         A Member confirmed that authorised campsites are regulated and licensed by Environmental Health.  Planning permission is also required. It was agreed that unauthorised sites should be subject to enforcement.

·         The CEG will share its findings with the Community Council as a first step.

·         Whilst commending the Group’s efforts, a Member condemned the concept of having to clear up after people adding that placing bins in rural areas attracts waste from residents of other authorities.

·         The Chair thanked the representatives of the CEG for the update.  It was suggested that this time of year is popular with school leavers camping and that there was a need to change attitudes through more interaction with schools.

·         The Head of Waste and Street Scene provided an update on progress with the Litter Strategy.  The Select Committee was reminded that the draft litter strategy was presented in November 2018 with lots of views expressed and shortly afterwards it was announced that the funding for local environmental quality was being removed.  Welsh Government suggested more collaborative work on litter and work with Keep Wales Tidy started.  All Welsh authorities have signed up to a programme of work.  A reduced amount of funding will be available and work will be branded “Caru Cymru” (Love Wales).  The authority needs to work within the national strategy.  It was noted that national enforcement such as litter from cars is a priority.  A further priority is a national campaign to support community groups to stop litter occurring in the first place.  Verge side litter, dog fouling and fly-tipping are also priorities.  The authority’s priorities will be aligned to national priorities. 

·         The representative of the CEG asked about training for enforcement officers, and also questioned if there had been any progress on sponsorship with businesses.  It was responded that training has been provided for enforcement officers mainly for parking, but moving on to environmental quality issues.  The presence of a uniform and visibility on the street is having an effect already.  This is mainly in towns not rural areas however.

·         Keep Wales Tidy is planning to approach businesses on a national level and any funding received would be shared out locally and equally.

·         The Head of Operations explained that six Civil Enforcement Officers have been appointed funded by the income from fines.  In time, it is intended to develop a wider enforcement role to include environmental quality.  Initially, priority will be given to on and off street parking offences. It was also confirmed that enforcement officers are in radio contact with the service manager.  It was agreed that a report on civil parking enforcement will be presented to a future meeting.

·         It was confirmed that the Welsh Government Strategy is expected in July.  It was agreed to invite CEG to a future meeting to review the strategy.  It was also agreed to review the success of the permit scheme at the same meeting.

·         Text Box: Committee Conclusion: The Chair thanked the Crucorney Environmental Group for their contribution to the meeting. It was agreed that the group would be invited to a future meeting to review the Litter Strategy and to also review the success of the permit scheme at the same meeting if possible. The issue of waste from unauthorised campsites will initially be discussed with the Community Council as part of the wider discussion of the trial It was agreed that the issue of unauthorised campsites will be discussed with the Community Council as part of wider discussion on the trial.