Sorting out a sticky problem
Archived press release
Date Published: 27/11/09
A pilot scheme aimed at combating the sticky issue of chewing gum litter in Aylesbury Vale is proving successful.
Aylesbury Vale District Council was one of 15 local authorities chosen by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) to run public awareness campaigns to help combat the unsightly problem of chewing gum litter in a nationwide scheme.
The campaign ran for four weeks, beginning in early September, and used bus stop advertising and posters paid for by DEFRA and Encams (the Keep Britain Tidy People) to make people aware of a possible £75 fine if they were caught dropping gum.
Free ‘gum wrap papers’ were also handed out at a series of fun roadshows in Aylesbury and Buckingham. The gum wraps are portable packets of tear-off sheets that allow chewed gum to be wrapped and stored before it can be binned, rather than dropping it on pavements.
The success of the initiative was measured by counting the amount of chewing gum dropped before, during and after the campaign at six gum litter ‘hotspots’ in Aylesbury. The amount of gum litter dropped in those areas reduced by an average of 24 per cent.
Councillor Kevin McPartland, Cabinet Member for Civic Amenities, said: “Although we would have liked to have seen a larger reduction in the amount of gum dropped, overall the campaign proved a success. We targeted some of our worst areas, so a 24 per cent reduction actually equates to quite a few more pieces of gum now being disposed of responsibly. This is only the first step however and hopefully people have now become much more aware of the problems this litter causes and hopefully it will prevent them from dropping their gum on the streets of this district.”
To request a free packet of gum wraps, please call 01296 585862 or email email@example.com