Torridge answers 'clean up' call

TORRIDGE District Council has answered a Bideford woman s call for a clean-up of a much-used footpath running alongside a local infants and nursery school. Jane Ross came to the Gazette with concerns about the sight and potential danger of litter, hedge

TORRIDGE District Council has answered a Bideford woman's call for a clean-up of a much-used footpath running alongside a local infants' and nursery school.

Jane Ross came to the Gazette with concerns about the sight and potential danger of litter, hedge branches, stone rubble and a hypodermic syringe lying alongside the lane running from Marland Terrace, behind the nursery department of Pynes Infants School and school playing fields to the housing estate at Devonshire Park.

This was a lane used regularly by large numbers of schoolchildren, she said.

She recognised some of the litter as having lain there for months, said Ms Ross.


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When hedges had been trimmed the branches had not been taken away, but just dumped under and behind hedges and litter with it.

Ms Ross said she was particularly concerned to find a syringe among litter close to the school gate.

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Despite reporting this to the council's environmental health department, nothing had been done other than to spray weeds with chemical weedkiller, she complained.

"If we could have the area cleaned up I am convinced people would respond and keep it nice. But how can we expect people to respect something like this? said Ms Ross.

"We have lovely baskets and flowers along the front of Bideford for the visitors and we love to see them here. But what about the rest of us? Why can't we enjoy Bideford, too, in the places we walk every day?"

The Gazette questioned Torridge District Council about the matter and has been assured that action has been taken.

Council leader James Morrish said: "I have looked into this particular case and I now believe that the situation is under control and the area is being regularly monitored and cleaned. Issues around dog fouling, litter and general mess are very unpleasant and I am very proud of our teams' response times to deal with matters such as this. My understanding is that Bideford Town Council has responsibility for this particular area of land and contract Torridge District Council to clear rubbish etc. on a fortnightly basis.

"Following communication from Jane Ross my officers have given extra time to ensure that this area is kept clean. High visibility enforcement patrols are, and will be, in the area on a regular basis to discourage offenders. The council will, of course, be taking appropriate action to stop the re-occurrence of offences. I can confirm that I personally visited the area, as have officers from the enforcement team, and the area remains clean and tidy.

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