Litter outside Wandsworth stations reducing as new campaign proves effective


The number of people dropping cigarette butts has fallen dramatically.


By SWLondoner staff

Wandsworth’s zero tolerance policy to smokers who drop cigarette butts is helping keep the streets clean, new results suggest.

Since the campaign to stop smokers dropping their cigarette butts on pavements outside rail and tube stations was launched, the number of people caught breaking litter laws near Tooting Bec station has fallen dramatically.

The waste enforcement team has been regularly visiting stations in the borough, bringing with them a large perspex dustbin containing waste from surrounding streets to show the impact of litter on local neighbourhoods.

Smoking related debris accounts for 90% of litter on Wandsworth streets and keeping the borough clean and tidy currently costs council taxpayers just under £4million a year.

“It is of course far too early to draw any firm conclusions about the effectiveness of the campaign, and we certainly must not take anything for granted, but these latest results are positive and encouraging,” said environment spokesman Councillor Jonathan Cook.

“We fully recognise that one small piece of litter on an otherwise spotless pavement can stick out like a sore thumb, which is why we operate a zero tolerance policy and take action against those who drop litter, including smokers who throw cigarette debris on the ground.”

People caught dropping litter, including cigarette ends, in the street face an £80 fixed penalty notice, with those refusing to pay summonsed to appear before magistrates who could impose fines of up to £2,500.

Between April and the end of June this year 217 of these on-the-spot-fines were handed out to litterbugs.

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