We've set out a series of measures to help tackle the ‘constant battle’ of waste and rubbish being left on our beaches and parks every day.
According to our beach cleaning staff, some of whom have worked with us for 15 years, yesterday (Thursday 25 June) was the largest amount on rubbish collected in a single day from the beach at a staggering 11 tonnes – the average at this time of year is about three tonnes.
The city is having to cope with a daily tidal wave of tourists and locals descending on the city’s parks and beaches, some of whom are leaving their rubbish behind them rather than finding a bin or taking it home.
Staff are 'stretched to the limit'
Although beach cleaning staff are starting at 5am every morning to clear the mountain of waste, they say they’re ‘stretched to the limit’.
Many City Parks and Cityclean staff have had to stop their normal work and become litter pickers to help supplement the collections that are still taking place.
The new measures include:
• Additional bin collections along the seafront
• More collections in our larger parks throughout the day and weekends
• 30 more large bins in the heavy footfall areas, including Hove lawns
• Enforcement officers patrolling the beach an extra hour a day, until 8pm, and handing out £150 on the spot fines
• An extra truck to concentrate on collecting litter on the seafront
• Extra staff to clear litter on the seafront and in parks
• A recruitment drive is also taking place
'We face a constant battle every day'
Cllr Anne Pissaridou, chair of our Environment, Transport and Sustainability committee, said: “We’re doing our very best to clear the massive amount of rubbish and waste that’s being left on our seafront and in our parks, but we’re already stretched to the limit.
“We’re hoping these new measures help with the constant battle we face every day, caused by people who frankly don’t care about other people, the environment or our wildlife and marine life.
“Our message is clear – we have almost 400 bins along the seafront and many bins in our parks that people can use for their rubbish. If the closest bin is full, we’re asking people to find one that isn’t, or take their rubbish home.
'People must take responsibility for their rubbish'
“There’s no excuse. If they’re prepared to carry it onto the beach or into the park they must take responsibility for their litter and take it away and dispose of it responsibly.”
Cllr Pissaridou said the council was still being affected by many Cityclean and City Parks staff self-isolating due to Covid-19, so were having to move staff around to fill gaps.
She added: “Not only are we redeploying staff to help with the beaches and parks, we also have to ensure the normal collections of residents bins, recycling and garden waste are up to speed to ensure the city is clean.”
Sadly, Brighton & Hove isn’t the only beach-based city or town that’s affected, with other local authorities including Bournemouth and Dorset seeing huge numbers of people on their beaches.