Complaints after bins left are in a mess on seafront
PUBLISHED: 16:00 01 September 2017
Sidmouth’s seafront was left a mess following its regatta weekend, with rubbish from overflowing bins left spread across the Esplanade.
According to residents, the town’s big belly bins, which send automatic messages to East Devon District Council when they are full, were not emptied during the bank holiday weekend.
Thousands of visitors flocked to Sidmouth for the regatta, and many had to leave their rubbish in piles built up against the side of the overflowing bins.
Alan Fellows–Bennett, 66, of All Saints Road, said the bins were not emptied once over the weekend and that first time he saw them being emptied was on Monday afternoon and Tuesday morning.
He added: “I don’t understand why the council, which would have known it was going to be a busy bank holiday, didn’t make additional arrangements.
“All the bins were overflowing and rubbish had been left in piles a third of the way up the bins. It is unacceptable.
“I tried calling the council over the weekend and tried the emergency line but no one picked up.
“The bins are supposed to have automatic sensors - so when they are full the council is sent a message.
“The rubbish caused lots of wasps to come out and looked such a mess, it was very unpleasant.”
Business owner Chris Pike, 32, said the reason the council was so happy to invest money in the bins was because they could be sent a notification when they were full.
He added the problem was in no way a reflection of the work done by the boys on the ground.
“Unfortunately as is the case with many public sector workers - hours and pay conditions are being driven by cost saving initiatives - funding is as always the issue,” he told the Herald.
“I think it is fair to say that the number of visitors to Sidmouth these past 21 days have been unprecedented compare to recent years.”
An district council spokeswoman said: “We had staff working hard throughout the bank holiday weekend and we subsequently received a number of compliments on how well the town was maintained during a period of high visitor numbers.
“Maintaining a clean environment is a priority for the council throughout the year. However, we do acknowledge that we had one or two bins overflowing at times for which we apologise.”