Community clear-up day for Bath?

The Virtual Museum wonders whether Bath will be taking part in the Government’s first Community Clear-up Day proposed for today – March 21st.

Rubbish thrown over the wall into Sydney Gardens
Rubbish thrown over the wall into Sydney Gardens

Following comments about chewing gum damage on streets throughout the city, it’s interesting to note that a Communities Minister is calling on companies whose products make up the majority of our litter to take part in this first nationally organised event.

The only publicity l have seen for it was a story on Saturday’s Daily Telegraph newspaper – January 30th, 2015 – which says Communities Minister Kris Hopkins and his ministerial colleague Dan Rogerson have written to George Osborne, the Chancellor, to urge him to force tobacco companies to pay for cleaning up cigarette butts and packets which account for nearly a third of street litter.

Research by Keep Britain Tidy suggests that more than half the population drop litter. The Government is keen to bring about ‘widespread behaviour change’ by making dropping litter as unacceptable as drink-driving.

The first community clear-up day will be held on March 21st – the first day of spring – with the aim of sprucing up city centres, high streets, villages and parks.

It's always somebody else's job to clean up isn't it?
It’s always somebody else’s job to clean up isn’t it? Queen Square.

Mr Hopkins said: ‘This is a call to arms for communities great and small to help us end this litter scourge by taking greater pride in our neighbourhoods…..’

‘….I also urge the manufacturers of items commonly associated with littering, such as soft drinks, chewing gum, crisps, confectionery and fast food, to join us in this day and contribute to the clear-up of our streets and public places.’

Gum splattered around pedestrian benches on Stall Street
Gum splattered around pedestrian benches on Stall Street

Councils in England spend more than £800 million every year on street cleansing.

The Virtual Museum has already pointed out that Australia holds a national Clean Up Australia Day and wonders why Bath could not lead the way over here.

Ridding our World Heritage streets of gum blotches and cans and take away plastic boxed would certainly improve the look of the place and something we could all contribute to.