A FOCUS on reducing litter in the Royal Borough this year is being encouraged by a former councillor.

Ed Wilson, who represented the Clewer South ward, regularly picks up waste and organises litter picks in the area.

Now he’s urging the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead (RBWM) to turn its attention to cleaner streets in the coming year.

In 2021, Mr Wilson collected almost 300 sacks of rubbish from parks and streets across the town stating it’s a “relentless” task.

He said: “I know that RBWM have lots of issues to deal with, but litter blights many areas across the Royal Borough

“Their street cleaners are doing a great job but there’s not enough of them to keep our towns and villages free from litter.”

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Mr Wilson approached the council with a proposal for volunteers to put out temporary bins where current ones are overflowing. 

He explained this would give RBWM more time to empty any overflowing litter or dog mess bins while making sure waste can be properly collected.

Royal Borough Observer: Last year, Ed Wilson collected almost 300 sacks full of litter. Picture: Ed WilsonLast year, Ed Wilson collected almost 300 sacks full of litter. Picture: Ed Wilson

Councillor David Cannon, cabinet member for public protection, said the council takes a zero-tolerance approach against all forms of littering.

He said: “It is a criminal offence to drop litter and there is no excuse to do so when there are plenty of public bins in the borough where residents and visitors can properly dispose of their litter, or we’d encourage people to take it home and dispose of it there.

“The council has a dedicated enforcement team to tackle environmental crime in order to make the borough a cleaner and safer place to live, work and visit.”

Cllr Cannon explained routine scheduled cleansing of road and footpaths are also carried out regularly.

And public bins are emptied on throughout the year.

Mr Wilson has also suggested the council hold a forum for residents and volunteers to raise concerns in the borough.

And he’s called on the council’s chief executive Duncan Sharkey to join him on a litter pick to see how parts of the town are being affected by it.

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Mr Wilson added: “It’s not just about getting people to pick up litter it's about changing behaviour in current and future generations.

“There are no magic solutions to the problem but a properly co-ordinated plan is needed and RBWM must take the lead in keeping our beautiful Royal Borough free from litter.”

If anyone is caught littering for the first time, the council will give them a £100 fine, which will be reduced to £75 if its paid within 14 days

Those not paying within 14 days will be prosecuted for the offence and, if convicted, may receive a fine of up to £2,500.

To report a litter problem, visit https://www.rbwm.gov.uk/home/transport-and-streets/report-problem-littering