A dedicated litter and waste action team has been formed by Thanet District Council to clean up in Cliftonville West.
The team, made up of 12 people, will concentrate on litter, cleanliness, waste and fly-tipping issues which affect the ward.
The move follows the raising of concerns, and a petition, by resident’s group A Better Cliftonville (ABC).
In July ABC member Joanne Goodson spoke at a council meeting, saying the ward needed large, clear signs instructing people to responsibly dispose of litter and dog waste; more bins and a better use of enforcement to send a clear message that littering and dog fouling would not be accepted.
A petition, with 182 validated signatures, was also handed in.
Following talks between ABC and Thanet council leader Chris Wells, the council has formed the new Environmental Action Team to focus on areas identified as having the most problems with waste and uncleanliness. The action team, which launched on Monday, will also concentrate on educating residents about how to be more responsible with their waste for the benefit of all those that live in the area.
The new approach will result in the team being assigned specifically to four identified areas of Cliftonville West.
Members are made up of:
- 2 x Street Scene Enforcement Officers (including dog fouling enforcement)
- 1 x Cleansing Supervisor
- 1 x Civil Enforcement Officer
- 1 x Selective Housing Licensing Officer
- 1 x Open Spaces operative
- 1 x Minor Works team member
- 5 x Street cleaning operatives, both manual street sweepers and mechanical
Each of the four areas will be focused on for a sustained period of time to prevent any build-up of long-standing issues.
Cllr Lin Fairbrass, Cabinet Member for Community Safety and Environmental Services, said: “A clean and welcoming environment is one of the council’s top priorities and we are always open to listen and respond to resident’s concerns with new initiatives to address the issues that matter most.
“I’m sure this new action team will make a significant and visible impact to the street scene in Cliftonville, helping to provide much-needed reassurance to residents in the area that we are listening to their views and acting on them to find a solution.
“What’s also important about this initiative and why it is focusing on Cliftonville, is unfortunately the majority of issues associated with illegally dumped waste and litter come from within this residential footprint, so the team will also be educating residents on how to be more responsible with their waste.”
All members of the action team will wear blue and silver high visibility tabards/vests.
To begin with their work will focus on replacing broken or missing residential bin lids, enforcement of fly-tipping, nuisance parking, littering and dog fouling, as well as more thorough attention on street cleaning, include weeding and alleyway clearances.
Extra weekly collections will also be introduced at problem roads where waste and litter has been identified as a constant issue due to the concentration of multiple occupation houses.
Ms Goodson said: “ABC are very happy that TDC have acknowledged and are acting upon residents’ concerns regarding the cleanliness of Cliftonville. We look forward to seeing the impact of the new approach and will work closely with Trevor Kennett and the action team to bring about the positive change needed to improve the area.”
If the scheme is successful, other action teams could also be formed to focus on areas of the district which might need similar attention.
The Council heads repeatedly claim their number one priority is to keep Thanet clean and welcoming for residents and visitors but have done nothing to alleviate any of the worst problems. When I have reported filth, graffiti and flyposting to various departments at TDC I get the response that tells me this is a low priority. Regarding the Planning Dept they keep telling me Flyposting, which is a huge problem in Thanet and an unwelcome anti-social stain on the area, is the lowest priority. We can see this for ourselves with roundabouts, traffic lights and pedestrian crossings along with phone boxes and other street furniture adorned with tatty posters that stay unremoved for months and years at a time. just look along Westwood Road and Haine Road for instance.
Another problem untouched is with the large dirty wheelie-bins outside HMO’s in Cliftonville that half obstruct the pavements as left permanently outside the property boundaries. No thought was given to where the bins should have been kept when Planning gave consent to these premises, and if they did they are not enforced. These being within the Selective Licensing area too. Money is taken from the landlords in licensing fees supposedly to be for ensuring good upkeep of these premises but little if no enforcement is made on the owners of the badly kept premises.
Poor street cleaning in the area is another problem with just two cleaners for this large area to cope with. Streets, alleys, parks and promenades thus not being cleaned regularly or at all in some locations.
Two litter bins recently being removed from outside St Paul’s Church and bus stop in Northdown Road was a silly idea as they were always used and full each day. I will ask for them to be replaced urgently. Cliftonville needs more litter and dog waste bins not less !
The previous Environmental Safety Officer, was asked to leave because she was not concentrating on the right area methods.
The new department Officer will be dealing correctly with all problems in the Thanet Area.
This is a big job, and TDC have now a much better chance of getting the work done correctly.
95 Tons of rubbish/litter was collected from Promenades, Beaches and Seaside Roads over the Late Bank Holiday Weekend. Something of a record.
Never-the-less, we still have Fly Tipping idiots (who, if caught will face an immediate £400 FINE). These people are the dregs of Thanet, and Local Residents…. not visitors! Our visitors have been putting their rubbish where it belongs. Margate Main Sands has never been so clean.
Weeds… these grow wildly, I had some on my side of the path. I got the hoe out and scraped them up in about 3 minutes. Then swept the 20 or so meters in front of my house, this took about another 5 minutes. So, in under 10 minutes, I had cleaned up the front of my property. Easy. I just wish that other Residents would do the same… and not complain to/blame the TDC. Just laziness, and lack of pride in their neighbourhood.
This is great news and I am glad public pressure (and Perhaps a change of control away from the useless Kippers) has forced the council’s hand on this.