Margate councillor tells young adults: ‘Stop treating our beaches like your bedroom’

The clear up this morning

Margate Central Labour Councillor Rob Yates is appealing to young adults visiting Margate to stop treating the beach like their bedrooms.

The comment is in response to the tide of filth left behind by beach-goers in Margate yesterday (June 25) and the growing trend of dumping ‘laughing gas’ canisters after they have been used for highs.

Piles of booze bottles, empty chip boxes, plates, wrappings and even a child’s inflatable were discarded across the main sands by people who did not bother to take their trash home.

Some visitors did use the bins which were overflowing by the afternoon. Similar mess was left at other beaches including Botany Bay.

Photo John Horton

The appalling mess was left despite Thanet council having put extra bins in place from the May bank holiday. Extra cleaning crews had also been put in place, equating to a full summer service, following “disappointing” litter left behind by visitors last month.

Photo Dan Thompson

Rob spent this morning (June 26) with the council’s refuse crews, Margate artist Dan Thompson and resident Tammie Dobson litter picking along Margate Main Sands.

Cllr Yates said: ““The beach has been left in an unacceptable condition. Partly from day trippers, but a new emergence of young adults leaving their drug paraphernalia has emerged.

Photo John Horton

“Take your nitrous oxide canisters, balloons and alcohol and put it in the bin. The beach is not your bedroom, it is a shared space that we enjoy together as a community. You are making the beach dangerous by leaving glass on the beach and leaving unnecessary mess.

“To many of us who live in flats, the beach is our garden that we are happy to share this with everyone who visits. However, put your rubbish in the bin or take it home with you, this goes for day trippers and the young adults coming at night. If you are going to take part in this new Nitrous Oxide trend then dispose of it responsibly. If you think this trend needs to stop then a petition is available.

“I am asking the council for a few litter grabbers that I hope can be available for community use, so if you are interested in this please get in touch. Meanwhile the issue of beach cleanliness and how we resolve it will be brought up again at the next Cabinet meeting.”

Photo Dan Thompson

Dan added: “This is a problem every summer, and it can easily be fixed. We need people cleaning the beach during the day, and bins cleared at the end of the day not the next morning. Then, the work of locals volunteers will be the finishing touch, not the heavy lifting.”

Polly clearing up Photo John Horton

Around 15 volunteers, with more turning up, are taking part in the clear up.

One resident called Polly said a system of beach inspectors giving out rubbish bags could help. Another said they were shocked by the thousands of gas canisters left on the sands.

Photo John Horton

Find the petition here

Mountain of litter left behind by crowds on Margate Main Sands

Broadstairs councillor calls for action over harmful ‘laughing gas’ craze


  1. It’s good that Councillor Yates is out seeing first hand the carnage. I think it would be great for Homer and Waite to go out and see the mess which is being left too. Might focus their minds on the general shambolic state of the waste and recycling service and prompt them to come up with solutions to a frankly out of control situation.

  2. Well said and well done Cllr Yates.

    However, it still begs the question as to why nobody from TDC, Your Leisure or security guards were present on the beach yesterday to prevent this from happening. As a result, you are reliant upon a few volunteers to assist the two beach cleaners I spotted this morning.

    Here we are at 11am and there are still volunteers on the beach assisting the beach cleaners with picking up yesterday’s mess.

    TDC needs to be proactive rater than reactive. Where are the beach Inspector and the enforcement officers ? Why are they not handing out refuse sacks and telling visitors to pick up their rubbish during the course of the day ?

    Why wait for next month’s Cabinet meeting to discuss the problem ? We need action, not words ! TDC has the same problem every year and every year TDC does nothing about it.

    The solutions are simple :

    1). Instruct the staff to start doing their jobs
    2). Empty the bins in the early evening – not the following morning

  3. This is the really depressing thing; I have just gone back and checked the news stories on this site from the summers of 2017, 2018 and 2019.

    Guess what ? Stories and reports of filthy beaches, litter and crap everywhere from day trippers.

    TDC have now had 4 summers to get this sorted. They have spectacularly failed to do so. They have failed the local residents.

    Anyone want a bet with me that Kathy will have to report on this in 2021 too ?

  4. I appreciate the fact, that extra bins have been provided, since the May Bank holiday. However, it would make sense to install a few more. If they are full, at least some decent people are trying to use them, it would certainly be a help towards litter control.

  5. My bedroom looks nothing like Margate beach.

    Don’t see any purple velvet on Margate beach. Cllr. Yates is a nutter.

  6. This is a depressing thought; I have just looked back at this site for similar stories published in 2017,2018 and 2019.

    Guess what ? Every summer there is an article or articles published about litter and crap being left all over the beaches by day trippers when the weather is hot.

    TDC have had four summers to sort this out. They have spectacularly failed to do so. They have failed their residents and the only strategy they seem to have is repetitive Tweets which are achieving absolutely nothing.

    Who wants a bet with me that Kathy has to report on this again in 2021 when TDC are taken by complete surprise by the numbers of beach visitors in warm weather ?


  7. So it’s all TDC’s fault ?

    The council should be putting their staff out there at risk of the virus heading into the crowds?
    The council should be spot fining people and getting abused in return?

    If you can carry anything to the beach you should be capable of taking it back home with you, simple !

    • Clearly it is down to TDC to solve. It’s happening on their patch every single year and those in power have no clue what to do. As a resident I’m sick of it.

      Of course people should take their litter with them. They don’t just become lazy when they visit Thanet though. Other Councils have much better ways of managing waste and recycling and their areas don’t look like the giant rubbish tip Thanet is becoming. It’s not just the beaches, everywhere is filthy.

      Fining beach goers for dropping litter? Too much like hard work. Fining travellers for leaving their crap everywhere? Too much like hard work. Ticketing idiotic parking on days like yesterday? Too much like hard work.

      Isn’t this their job?

      • It’s happening on every popular beach, all over the UK. Clearly, it’s not a problem that’s unique to TDC. They can’t be blamed for what happened at Bournemouth or Brighton.
        The appalling mess and the public disorder are a sad reflection on our fellow countrymen

  8. So just how do all these day trippers benefit Thanet? Buy some ice creams suppose, but thats about it! How about fencing the beaches off, and charging people to use it?

  9. If anyone is still in denial that TDC aren’t responsible for sorting this out, this is a response from another Council who is experiencing the same issue and what they are doing about it:

    “.. We recently added 59 temporary bins along the coast and on the beaches, in addition to the 220 bins we already have, and we empty these on average 8-10 times a day.

    “Our teams are working later into the evening. We have redeployed staff as temporary beach wardens to help keep the beaches and promenades free from litter, and we’re looking to recruit another 18 beach wardens to help tackle littering throughout the summer.”

    Proactive solutions. Never get this with TDC and we’ll be back to moaning about it next summer when nothing changes.

      • What about the other initiatives? Different collection times, more bins, bins emptied multiple times a day, staff redeployed, temporary staff? There must be loads of TDC staff without much to do during the lockdown. Why weren’t they redeployed? They were redeployed to man a phone line and contact businesses to get them to claim grants, why aren’t they redeployed to deal with the beach issues? What about more temporary staff as beach wardens?

        As I said, nothing will change and we’ll end up debating this in 2021, 2022 etc etc That’s what is depressing.

        • If you think there are district council staff sat around doing nothing then you need to find out more about what the councils do !!

          Nearly every council employee’s day jobs are still being done in more difficult circumstances having to work remotely, little is not being done, and a lot extra is being done to try get through the current crisis ! Staff needing to deal with getting government grants out is just one of those extra jobs they need to find resources to deal with.

          Watch the news, local councils are going to be in serious trouble before too long and many ‘niceties’ will be lost…..

  10. How about paying more council tax to pay for all this cleaning myopic Thanetian, or how about the govt coughing up when it said that Councils should spend what they need to?
    There wouldn’t be any political bias here would there?
    TDC is running out of cash, has been for years, 10 years to be precise, since this austerity malarkey started.
    This is what you get when you cut local govt funding.
    So stop complaining and get your plastic bag and litter picker out if you don’t want to pay more, or do only poor people do this sort of work?
    TDC are not the best in the business, but neither is central govt.
    They caused all this, let them fix it.

    • Stop being pc by calling them yoùng adults, they are thugs, slobs, layabuts and wasters who respect no one just say it as it is

    • Council Tax doesn’t have to be raised. TDC waste so much money on a regular basis that better management of what they already do could release money to pay for more cleaners.

      You want an example? How about the £85,000 wasted on the “ticketless parking” pilot in Trinity Square which made absolutely no difference to parking income. How about another example? What about the pie in the sky £70,000 per year estimate TDC made in the budget for income generation from “coastal development” which now has to be found from budget savings as none of the income has ever materialised? That’s over £150k without even giving it much thought.

      Just not doing those two schemes could have saved enough money to employ at least 10 cleaners for the beaches over the whole summer.

      Just two examples of where TDC waste our taxpayers money which really should be spent on other things like sorting out the beaches.

    • Get shifts working in the evening like they do abroad. Remove all the rubbish in the evening by 11pm. Get the useless Gavin Waite to visit all the beaches after 6pm (it’s about time he earned his ridiculous salary) instead of cosying up in Deal. Catchy notices to tell people to clear up their mess (polite ones are ignored). Put notices in London and North Kent publications. Act now, not in a month’s time! This should have been agreed last year after all the rubbish problems.

  11. E-Mail both M.P’s make them work to put pressure on to get T.D.C to sort it out and yes maybe we should all do our bit but in these times of the unknown you can not blame people if they don’t want to put themselves at risk not only to Covid but to the abuse and risk of what else you could contract , I admire these volunteers but it must be heartbreaking to do this for our local communitie for people from outside the area not giving two hoots and unfortunately councils have no one you can complain to as they self manage, maybe all the rubbish ect should be dumped on the doorstep of the council offices ? just a thought the council in Thanet have neglected everything for years and just let everything slide it needs shaking up ,turning around and new import that starts injecting back into the area using limited funds wheres thin it’s a case of letting things slide over years and not managed as it should have.I for one would not object to paying more but at the end of the day the money would not be used as it should !;

    • I’d love to know what controls you think the council have that the MPs can force then to use…. !

  12. Are young ppl interested in Covid-9…. not really, they’re not taking this situation seriously, no respecting older ppl, they’re more interested in parties, drinking, and having a good laugh, according to the PM they carry this virus, if you go to the beach what do you see? Young ones drinking and no respecting social distance, nothing wrong with having a good time guys but our present times are not the same, have some respect and consideration for the older generation, because I see that this is not happening now.

  13. Obviously, there is much that could and should be done to alieviate the pressure on the seaside towns but it’s been cut-back after cut-back year on year for the past decade or more leaving less and less funding to pay for everything we were used to getting in the way of essential services. The Tory government are ultimately to blame for it all as this has happened under their watch. They have turned the tables taking more from the general public, disabled and poor to divert it to themselves and the elite. if you don’t like this then stop voting them in.
    The youngsters coming to enjoy themselves on our beaches at our expense will not care or have any respect for anyone, not even themselves. They have grown up under this kind of society that is all out for themselves and stuff anyone else. They don’t care for anyone and are used to parents cleaning up behind them or living in filthy homes. It is a sad reflection on society that they should abuse the welcome of others then go defecating in front of kids on the sand dunes and leaving it there for unsuspecting public to walk on. I am not used to all this and the volunteers who are going out each day to tidy up are not used to this disgusting behaviour by day trippers either.
    There needs to be an immediate and adequate plan put into action to keep the beaches and promenades clean though, along with enforcement and parking officers deployed to all the hot spots fining those who abuse our hospitality.

  14. Typical politician.

    Divide and causes rifts between two demographics of people. Lazy and uneducated response I’d expect from our leeches of elected leaders.

    To lie the blame for the mess of the beaches to the young is ridiculous. All of the age groups are just as bad. The older should just know better but we don’t want to upset those that might vote for us… do we.

    The beaches being messy isn’t a pandemic thing it’s a yearly thing. More bins. More initiatives need long before now.

    Also why do these old people that run councils send all our recycling to land fills in other countries?!?!?!? Do we I say and not what I do???

    Disgusting from start to finish.

    Fight the power.

  15. We need a local residents permit system, and stop the chavs and DFL’s from going onto the beaches.

    • The beaches are not owned by local residents, and are open to anyone, just the same as us visit a London park, or attraction.

      It requires better policing and/or council intervention, along with extra bins, and heavier fines, for those caught littering, or being a nuisance.

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