New efforts to clear litter in the county

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Northumberland County Council has launched a fresh crackdown on litter louts.

Cleaning streets and public spaces costs the authority a huge amount each year and the new LOVE Northumberland, HATE Litter campaign will highlight the negative impacts of littering behaviour.

It will focus on rubbish hot spots and key issues such as cigarette waste, fast food wrappings and items by the roadside, and council teams will also be working pro-actively with schools and businesses to mark positive action.

Zero tolerance will also form a pivotal part of the campaign – with enforcement officers looking to identify culprits and issue on the spot fines and deliver a programme of enforcement in targeted areas.

Coun Ian Swithenbank, policy board member responsible for streetcare and environment at the county council, said: “The environmental quality of the county is extremely important to the council and communities right across Northumberland.

“We want to work with schools, businesses and various organisations to highlight the issues caused by litter, the cost to council tax payers and also to develop solutions.”

At a recent meeting, members of Ponteland Town Council discussed actions that they could take to support the campaign.

The Ponteland authority will encourage more people in the area to collect rubbish and additional litter pickers will be purchased to be given out to these volunteers.

An anti-litter poster competition for schools is among the other proposals being considered and Coun Adam Shanley said it was important to approach local businesses about specific issues, for example the levels of rubbish behind the Merton Way shops.