'Keep Our Towns Tidy' pledge from Wigan Council

'Keep Our Towns Tidy' pledge from Wigan Council

New plans to refocus Wigan Council’s efforts to tackle littering and fly-tipping have been given the green light.

Cabinet members approved the Litter Strategy last week having heard that removing litter from public spaces and clearing fly-tipped waste costs the local authority an estimated £4m each year.

Included in the action plan is an emphasis on waste and recycling education to help the borough’s communities and businesses tackle the issues in partnership with the council.

This is alongside a zero-tolerance approach to environmental crime through enforcement action.

Councillor Paul Prescott, cabinet portfolio holder for environment, said: “We are proud of our borough’s thriving greenspaces and bustling district centres, but the message is that we all have a role to play when it comes to being responsible for keeping litter and fly-tipping off our streets.

“We will be launching a supporting campaign in the new year to catch people’s imaginations and hopefully engage our communities in this really important work to keep our borough tidy.”

The strategy sets out seven objectives:

  • Educating adults about the impacts of litter and fly-tipping
  • Working with schools and colleges
  • Supporting our communities and volunteers
  • Being tougher on those who continue to litter and fly-tip
  • Working closely with local businesses
  • Making sure we have the right bins, in the right place and they’re emptied at the right time, with over 2,000 bins maintained by the council
  • Looking at our data so we know where the problems are and what is working to tackle them

A 2021 Keep Britain Tidy survey for Wigan Borough found that cigarette butts and smoking-related litter was the most common form. This was followed by sweet and crisps packets, plastic bottles, and takeaway food packaging.

Coun Prescott added: “As it says in the strategy; ‘Every pound of taxpayer’s money spent clearing up after people who fly-tip in our borough, drop litter on our streets or fail to clean up after their pets, is a pound that could be invested in our schools, enhancing our local environment or caring for people in need.’

“But this is not just about the money being spent on clearing our streets and public spaces. Littering and fly-tipping is a real blight on our environment. It is unsightly, can cause problems for local wildlife, and can cause major damage to our local waterways and animals that depend on them.”

For the full cabinet report, visit: Agenda for Cabinet on Thursday, 24th November, 2022, 3.00 pm.

Posted on Monday 28th November 2022

© Wigan Council