Agenda item

Litter Strategy

This matter is the responsibility of Executive Councillor for Environmental Services, Cllr Andrew Sully.


Report Author: Vicky Lowman – Specialist (Parking and Enforcement)


The Portfolio Holder for Environmental Servicesintroduced the report and raised the following points:  

·        Protecting and enhancing the environment of the district was one of the Council’s corporate priorities. The Litter Strategy would provide a framework within which to do this.  

·        The Litter Strategy had been written in line with the government’s Litter Strategy for England 

·        The strategy proposed a zero-tolerance approach to littering.  

·        There were 8 key objectives from the strategy which included a litter prevention programme, community protection notices, looking at how the Council was proactively addressing the causes of littering, creating a public realm which looked cared for, understanding of the cleansing schedule which the Council had to do, building a strong sense of community and a set of enforcement and reward responses 

·        The Portfolio Holder welcomed officers from East Hampshire District Council who were attending the meeting via Zoom to discuss the External Litter Enforcement item which would follow the Litter Strategy.   


The Assistant Director for Commercial Services raised the following points: 

·        The Litter Strategy was designed to change culture and behaviour in the district. There would be a focus on education, ensuring that there was the right infrastructure with litter and dog bins and there also would be a focus on enforcement.  

·        Litter damaged the environment and could impact the economy by discouraging people from visiting the area.  


During the debate the following points were raised: 

·        Concerns were raised about the litter being dropped during waste collections by Somerset Waste Partnership. Officers responded that the Council would take this up with SWP as the Council’s contractor if they were failing to keep to the agreement of the contract.  

·        Support was expressed for the Litter Strategy coming forward. 

·        It was asked if the mapping exercise of dog bins mentioned in the report could be shared with members and it was queried if the mapping exercise included bins owned by parish councils or only those owned by Somerset West and Taunton Council. It was responded that litter and dog bins which were Somerset West and Taunton Council's responsibility had been focused on as part of the reason for the survey was to use the data to form a maintenance and repair programme for the bins owned by the Council  

·        It was questioned about whether the bins in the unparished area of Taunton had been surveyed and mapped. Officers responded that they had been in contact with the Charter Trustees as there were several bins in the unparished area which are going to be replaced. The maps would be provided to members following the meeting.  

·        It was questioned whether the Council would undertake educational work in schools as part of the strategy. It was responded by officers that this would be part of the strategy.  

·        It was asked if a system of numbering bins could be adopted to allow for members of the public to report issues with a particular bin. It was responded by officers that ways to identify bins, such as QR codes, were being looked at.  

·        It was suggested gathering data on how regularly each bin becomes full may enable more effective cleansing schedules to be established. It was responded by officers that this would be looked at as part of the action plan in the coming months.  


The committee resolved to note the recommendations in the report 


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