Litter blitz campaign
West Oxfordshire residents will be reminded that the issue of litter is in their hands as a joint campaign is launched to tackle the problem.
The District Council has joined forces with Witney Town Council and Witney Mayor Chrissie Curry to get across the message that litter is everyone's concern – and to urge litter bugs to think twice before they drop.
Anti-litter posters are going up in shop, school and business windows, and an Anti-Litter Day will take place in Witney town centre on Thursday, October 26, to raise awareness across the District about litter and the effects it has on the environment and street cleaning services. The day will include:
* Street performers wearing litter-themed costumes and known as 'Rubbish Heads' putting on entertaining and engaging shows throughout the day to grab people's attention and send out a hard-hitting anti-litter message.
* A Council display under the clock tower at Waitrose giving facts and figures about litter in West Oxfordshire. There will also be a 'Lost Property' pile of rubbish collected from the town centre streets.* A demonstration of the Council's 'Gum Buster' machine, which clears chewing gum from the streets
* Street sweeps organised by Witney Town Council with help from local groups.
Over the last two years the Council has, on average, picked up 1,350 tonnes of litter across the District per year. Every week, the Council's street cleaners collect an average 200 bin bags full of litter in Witney alone.
The campaign will be rolled out across the District and the Council hopes communities, businesses and schools will get involved.
Cllr David Harvey, Cabinet Member for Environment, said: "The Council employs five full-time staff who work 364 days a year keeping Witney free of litter, and spends hundreds of thousands of pounds every year keeping the District's streets clean.
"We want people to realise the extent of the problem and that they can each make a difference by putting litter in bins or taking it home to recycle. The campaign message is clear: Litter – it's in your hands."
Witney Mayor Chrissie Curry is encouraging businesses to sponsor litter bins as part of the campaign and said: "The Town Council also works very hard to keep areas such as The Leys and play parks clear of litter. I noticed over the summer an increase in litter and that's why I wanted this campaign.
"Dropping litter is a filthy offence, looks appalling and costs a fortune to clear up. Responsibility is in everyone's hands."
"Come on everyone – be proud of Witney and stop blighting it with litter."
Anyone interested in getting involved with the campaign or litter picking can contact Ms Curry by calling Witney Town Council on 01993 704379.
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