Using litter bins goes a long way

PUBLISHED: 10:53 02 November 2007 | UPDATED: 23:08 28 May 2010

WHEN it comes to tackling litter problems, Fenland Council officers and Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) brought smiles of appreciation to the faces of many local people in Whittlesey when they handed out rewards to people who were seen putting t

WHEN it comes to tackling litter problems, Fenland Council officers and Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs) brought smiles of appreciation to the faces of many local people in Whittlesey when they handed out rewards to people who were seen putting their rubbish in a litter bin.

Council officers from the Safer Fenland Partnership and PCSOs patrolled the town thanking more than 40 startled residents and school pupils who put their rubbish in street bins and presented them with a reward of a free swimming voucher for use at any of the council's three leisure centres.

The new patrols are part of the council's successful Be Seen to be Clean anti-litter campaign launched earlier this year. The campaign is currently running in both Whittlesey and March and will move on to Chatteris and Wisbech next year.

The positive approach to rewarding people who use the litter bins proved to be a big hit. It went hand in hand with an intervention approach to people were caught dropping litter in the street. PCSOs and council officers opted to stop the litter bugs and explain that dropping litter was an offence for which a fixed penalty of £75 can be served.

Councillor Peter Murphy, portfolio holder for street scene and waste, said: "Providing more carrot than stick has proved to be a successful formula for encouraging people to put their litter in bins rather than on the street. This is all part of our campaign to reduce litter and protect the environment.

"While we have the power to issue £75 fixed penalty notices, we would much rather reward responsible behaviour.

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