As a regular reader of The Star I have read many articles and letters about the litter and fly-tipping epidemic that is blighting our city at the moment.
I thought I would add my voice to the growing tide of opinion that expects our city council to do more about it.
This letter is based on my own experience of walking around areas of Sheffield with two friends.
We began at Sheffield Station for a walk of around seven miles, which followed a route outlined in a book including facts about the woods and interesting sites along the way.
All was fine as we climbed up to the Cholera Monument and then into Norfolk Park.
However, on reaching the Jervis Lumb Nature Trail we immediately encountered large amounts of trash, particularly by the bridge at the Beldon Road end.
Passing over Park Grange Road towards East Bank Road also demonstrated to us that people there would rather dump their litter on the roads, paths and grassy banks than in a litter bin.
The whole area was a mess. And please bear in mind that Park Grange Road is on the tram route and so visitors to Sheffield are seeing this mess also.
Hardly a good image of our fair city in my opinion, but of course, as far as the council is concerned it’s not the city centre and doesn’t warrant a regular clean-up.
Our route then took us through Buck Wood, Nether Spring Dell to Leighton Road and into Rollestone Wood, which had some general detritus including a discarded trampoline.
As we were about to enter an underpass that took us under Blackstock Road (I think) what then made our walk even more of a delight was nearly being hit by a drinks can that had obviously been thrown from a passing vehicle.
We then proceeded via Hang Bank Wood and Carr Wood, where more fly-tipping was observed up past Lees Hall to Newfield School and finishing near the Norton Water Tower.
The point I am making is that all along this walk there are numerous examples of litter and fly-tipping that have gone unchecked and which appears to be increasing daily.
If this continues then what should be a lovely walk through a green environment will feel like it’s a walk through one of Sheffield’s reclamation sites.
I’m not just pointing the finger at Sheffield Council. If we want to maintain Sheffield’s image of being the greenest city in this country then other stakeholders have to be held accountable too. I include parents in this.
Where I live, we have a litter issue, especially on routes taken by schoolchildren, who discard pop cans, crisp and chocolate wrappers at will even when there is a bin close by.
Do parents educate their children these days to “Keep Britain Tidy”? And what about teachers? Do they say anything at school when you can’t play sport without first having to spend part of the lesson picking litter up off the grass?
Littering is a blight on every community. It shows people do not care about the environment where they live. At worst it is a crime (how many people has Sheffield Council fined for dropping litter or for fly-tipping?), at best it is downright laziness not to put it in a bin or take it home. Using the lack of bins as an excuse does not absolve us from our civic duty.
Let’s clean Sheffield up please. This message goes out to everyone. Let’s get pride in our city back.