Monday, 22 April 2019

Getting rid of litter bins: councillor’s suggestion is common sense... or ridiculous

Getting rid of litter bins: councillor’s suggestion is common sense... or ridiculous

Sir, — I was delighted to read (Standard, March 15) that Henley is represented on South Oxfordshire District Council by Joan Bland, someone with that increasingly rare faculty... common sense.

My observations have focused on the abuse of litter bins in rural lay-bys, particularly those at the M40 junction at Lewknor which are quickly bunged up with bags of kitchen waste and worse.

Nine months ago I suggested to the district council that it might experiment with removing these bins for a trial period but to my astonishment a second bin was installed at each site last week.

Not only is this stupidity profligate, it will also double the amount of waste that the council will have to collect for disposal to landfill (see picture).

In my letter to you of February 22, I suggested that we should experiment with fewer bins and concentrate on education to bring about a culture change. Judging by more recent letters on the subject, Joan Bland and I are not alone.

Who needs litter bins? I was taught that it is vulgar to eat or drink on the street and that still holds true, so my only occasion to use a bin would be to dispose of litter I have picked up.

Some weeks ago a wheelie bin appeared in a lay-by at the top of Howe Hill (your correspondent Nick Edwards’s patch), which was soon filled to overflowing with unpleasant waste.

To my delight, a public-spirited person recently removed this bin and its contents and this lay-by will now remain litter-free as it always has been.

To my mind it is blindingly obvious that Councillor Bland is quite right to question the effectiveness of litter bins in Henley and that her thinking is most certainly not “counter-intuitive” or “illogical and naive”.

If Mr Edwards is genuinely troubled by the “litter-strewn verges” perhaps he might request a litter pick of Howe Hill and Howe Road, which have been in a deplorable state for more than a year. — Yours faithfully,

Paul Sargeantson

Britwell Salome

Sir, — Who would have believed it? According to Councillor Joan Bland, the solution to our overflowing town centre rubbish bins is not, as one would imagine, to empty them more often or use bigger bins but to do away with them altogether because then people would simply take their rubbish home. Really?

At a time when the whole country is at last waking up to the blight of rubbish strewn everywhere and the need to clear it up, this councillor’s solution is not to make it easy to dispose of rubbish but to make it harder.

We expect a lot better of our elected representatives. — Yours faithfully,

Roland Willcock


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