The litter squad from Argyll and Bute and Loch Lomond Park Authority.
By Laura Dennett
Staff from Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park Authority joined forced with a team from Argyll & Bute Council to tackle roadside litter head on and carry out a litter pick on the A82.
Armed with litter pickers and safety gear, the group covered the busy stretch of road between Duck Bay and Luss. Just some of the items that were cleared from the area included furry dice, underwear and, unfortunately bottles and bags filled with human waste.
In just under 7 miles the team filled an astonishing 124 bags of litter. 48 of the bags were filled with plastic bottles and cans that will be recycled, reducing the amount of litter being sent to landfill and highlighting the needless waste being generated.
Roadside litter is a problem in many parts of Scotland including the National Park. The A82 is one of the most scenic routes in the country but is often a hot spot for litter. Working in partnership with the council, the National Park Authority wanted to clean up this popular tourist route to help prevent future littering. Litter often acts as a beacon for further littering, giving people ‘permission’ to discard more items. By cleaning up the area, the National Park Authority and the council aims to discourage people from dropping litter.
Recently appointed Litter Prevention Manager for the National Park Authority, Nik Turner, has been instrumental in the campaign and also took part in the litter pick. She said: “The A82 is one of the major routes into and through the National Park, and roadside litter not only creates a negative first impression but it is also dangerous and expensive to clean up.
“The amount of litter we discovered on just one stretch of the A82 was shocking but by working with Argyll and Bute Council we want create positive change and make sure the National Park remains a place of outstanding beauty.
“We’re committed to tackling this issue and by working alongside our partners to take direct action; we want to drive home the message that it’s unacceptable to drop litter anywhere, least of all in a National Park.”
It is illegal to drop litter and anyone caught littering can be issued with a with a fixed penalty notice of £80 or could potentially be prosecuted and risk a fine of up to £2,500.
Councillor Roddy McCuish, right, Argyll and Bute Council’s Policy Lead for Roads and Amenity Services, said: “It really is shameful that anyone would choose to leave litter anywhere, let alone at a location as beautiful as Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park.
“We are very fortunate to have such wonderful natural beauty across Argyll and Bute and we want to make sure we are all playing our part in keeping it that way. Events such as this roadside litter pick are a great way to highlight the problem and to help clear away some of the litter.
“I thank every member of council staff and the team from the National Park who took part, as well as our residents who get involved in action like this and those who discard of their litter responsibly.”
The litter pick is the first of a series of events planned by the National Park Authority to remove litter from key sites across the National Park as part of Keep Scotland Beautiful’s ‘Spring Clean 2019’ and to get the National Park ready for the peak visitor season ahead.
Georgina Massouraki from Keep Scotland Beautiful said: “It is great to be working with Loch Lomond & the Trossachs National Park Authority to help stem growing issues with litter in this much-loved beauty spot.
“Roadside litter is a particular challenge because of how difficult, dangerous and costly it is to remove, and the scale of this spring clean operation on the A82 is a perfect example of this. This is why, as part of Spring Clean 2019, we are bringing particular focus to our preventative roadside litter campaign, with a Week of Action 11-19 May.
“With half of the litter on Scotland’s roads coming from people eating and drinking in their vehicles, we hope that our campaign will help encourage them to do the right thing. Don’t abandon your litter on the roadside – just ‘Give your litter a lift, take it home!”.
Throughout April and May the National Park Authority will be working in partnership with local authorities and communities across the area to give the National Park a spring clean and to make sure everyone puts litter exactly where it belongs – in the bin.
- Although the National Park Authority doesn’t have the responsibility for, or the resources, to collect all the litter in the National Park, addressing this issue is one of the organisation’s priorities. The National Park Authority is currently developing a National Park-wide litter prevention strategy. Keep Scotland Beautiful is the charity that enables action on sustainable development by working with organisations and communities to change behaviour to reduce carbon emissions and environmental impact. It’s part of our work to make Scotland clean, green and more sustainable. Further details from http://www.keepscotlandbeautiful.org
BONNIE BANKS SPRUCED UP FOR SPRING I found this article interesting and feel that Argyle and Bute contribute to the rubbish left by the inconsiderate visitors
A visit to Firkin Point with my grandchildren on April the 1st 2019 I was surprised on my arrival how litter free it was but as we went on to the beach the path was covered with litter and quite a eyesore. I thought these people could have put the rubbish in a litter bin but they can’t as there is not any even the recycling bins have been removed.
I find this very disappointing.
But as you drive up to Firkin point from Balloch the first two lay-bys you pass are serviced by West Dumbartonshire and have two litter bins Duck Bay has litter bins but beyond that all the lay-bys serviced by Argyle and Bute have not got any Litter bins in them, last year when I asked Argyle and bute I well my wife received a phone call from someone from Argyle and Bute council to say that there are no bins because people were leaving “litter” and household items in the lay-bys.
I would have thought as we are now in the spring and summer tourist season and as firkin has camping and Motorhome overnight parking permits these people have no place to put some litter.
Are these savings for the A&B council
PS was going to post a couple of photos but where?
Thanks for this Eddie. Interesting. I know Firkin Point is very popular. Can you send your pictures to email@example.com in j-peg format if possible. Small point. Argyll has two L’s. Makes an L of a difference as the man said. Good to know what the readers think.