Anti-Litter Campaign Targets Wimbledon

Hundreds of littering fines issued in SW19

Smokers in Wimbledon have been warned about the impact cigarette litter has on the environment, with more than 1,500 littering fines being issued since June.

As part of its anti-litter campaign and educating people about the effects of environmental crime, Merton council's enforcement team has been speaking to people at Wimbledon Piazza about cigarette litter and the cost of dropping cigarettes on Merton’s streets – a £75 fixed penalty notice (FPN).

As well as having the NHS LiveWell service on hand to give stop-smoking advice, the team also handed out cigarette pouches to smokers passing by to deter them from throwing their cigarette butts on the ground.

Wimbledon has the highest rate of cigarette litter in Merton with more than 1,500 FPNs being issued since June.

Although a recent survey showed that 72% of residents would describe Merton streets as clean, the council says it's continuing its fight against littering and fly-tipping. Initiatives include:

  • Educating people about the effects of environmental crime
  • The council's publication of its anti-litter code
  • Its partnership with environmental enforcement officers, on-the-spot £75 penalty charge notices
  • The installation of special gum and cigarette butt bins across the borough and new high tech smart bins in parks.
  • The council also teamed up with Love Clean Streets earlier this year to allow residents to report litter and fly-tipping through the free Love Clean Streets smartphone app.

Cabinet member for environmental cleanliness, Councillor Judy Saunders, said: "Our clean teams are out around the clock clearing up litter and fly-tips as well as educating people about the impact litter and environmental crime has on the local area. We spend over £5million every year keeping our streets clean, money that could be better spent on other services.

“We know that the majority of residents want to keep Merton clean so, as part of our zero-tolerance approach to people littering, our enforcement officers ensure that those who drop litter in any public open space are issued with a fine."

October 28, 2014