Dirty Charlton: Councillors to discuss Greenwich’s struggling street cleaning service

Street dumping off the Woolwich Road – a regular hotspot not covered by the “taskforce”

Noticed any changes in how clean your street is? Changes in Greenwich Council’s street cleaning services are being discussed by a panel of councillors on Tuesday – with a special focus on Charlton.

Internal changes in how the service is run means streets are now – apparently – swept on the same day as rubbish and recycling are collected. For most of Charlton, that will mean Monday, although for some streets towards Maryon Park this is Thursday.

Councillors on the Community Safety and Environment Panel will be reviewing the progress of the new arrangements at Woolwich Town Hall on Tuesday evening.

A report presented by council officers reveals cuts in funding have hit a service which already gets less cash per resident than neighbouring Lewisham and Southwark boroughs, with street cleaning services predicted to overspend by £1.6 million this year (or 8/10ths of a tall ships regatta).

It also claims that “perceptions that streets are not as clean as they have been in the past” are just perceptions, as fewer people are contacting the council to complain – although in August, Greenwich borough failed more than one in ten inspections of street detritus.

A separate report admits there have been specific problems in Charlton – but not all streets are getting the attention needed to deal with the issue.

Earlier this year, part of Plumstead got an “environmental taskforce” to deal with flytipping and other issues. The approach, the report says, “proved successful”, so has resulted in similar teams “being deployed in the Charlton area following a meeting with the Charlton Church Residents Association [sic] in December 2015″.

Taskforce area
The taskforce area. Almost all the Charlton Central Residents Association patch (west of Charlton Church Lane) is covered, along with Floyd Road, once notorious for flytips

So, if you live in the area covered by Charlton Central Residents Association – along with a stretch of Charlton Church Lane, Floyd Road and the Valley Grove Estate – you should be getting extra street cleaning and prompt attention to flytipping.

The report says: “The introduction of the Charlton Taskforce has improved the public realm, especially around the Charlton station area where litter was a particularly problem [sic] and in the vicinity of Charlton Athletic FC, where street cleansing operations are now more effectively co-ordinated to coincide with home game fixture timings.”

However, it appears the rest of the area is still being neglected – something highlighted by Greenwich’s annual struggle to deal with autumn leaf fall.

Victoria Way, 12 November
These leaves were actually taken away – but it was Victoria Way’s first sweep for many weeks

I’ve heard anecdotal reports of streets not being swept for weeks on end – and there’s certainly evidence of leaves being left in piles and abandoned on Charlton Road and elsewhere rather than being bagged and taken away.

Unfortunately, dealing with Greenwich’s street services teams can be like a war of attrition.

After a Greenwich councillor claimed streets were being swept on Mondays, I thought I’d take some photos…

Wellington Gardens (left) and Victoria Way (right), Sunday 30 October
Wellington Gardens (left) and Victoria Way (right), Sunday 30 October

On Sunday 30 October, I took some pictures ahead of the supposed Monday sweep. Left is Wellington Gardens (in the area covered by the taskforce), right is Victoria Way.

Wellington Gardens (left) and Victoria Way (right)
Wellington Gardens (left) and Victoria Way (right), Wednesday 2 November

On Wednesday 2 November, I returned. And guess what? The street covered by the taskforce had been swept. Victoria Way had been ignored. I later found a bag of leaves had been abandoned further down Victoria Way – it appeared a council cleaner had just walked off the job and left it there.

But even after presenting these photos to local councillor Gary Parker, who then pressed officers and senior councillors to act, it took Greenwich Council 10 days to bother sweeping the leaves off Victoria Way – and that was only after I copied local MP Matthew Pennycook into a follow-up complaint. There was no response to me from any of the council officers involved, although it was noticeable that neighbouring streets were ignored.

Victoria Way
Three separate reports of this bent lamp post have been sent to Greenwich Council – but nobody has taken action

While the council is to be applauded for using the FixMyStreet system, it clearly isn’t using it properly – three separate reports of a dangerously bent lamp post on Victoria Way have been filed since last Thursday; nobody has acted on them at the time of publishing.

It’s also clear that council staff aren’t encouraged to report street issues themselves, as they are in Lewisham – refuse teams will have passed that bent lamp post three times on Monday.

Fix My Street map
This map of live Fix My Street reports shows how the taskforce does not address areas such as Victoria Way, Charlton Lane and Gallon Close. A further hotspot, around Marlborough Lane/Canberra Road, is not on this map.

FixMyStreet also reveals reports that anyone with a basic knowledge of the area will know have been simply ignored. They’ve been filed, but not carried out.

If the councillors take their job seriously, they should be looking at the map of complaints. And if council officers are recording a drop in complaints, it may be because people have lost confidence in the council’s ability to respond.

“Leaves and litter piling up at the beginning Canberra Rd, junction with Marlborough Lane and Charlton Road”
(28 October)

“Rubbish needs sweeping up. Lots of paper rubbish and tree rubbish needs clearing up – it’s not been done for a few weeks.” (Marlborough Lane, 22 August)

“The top section of Victoria Way beside the shops has been getting more and more littered over the past few months. As well as being unsightly, it is encouraging or at least condoning littering in the area. Yesterday, I had to ask someone to pick their litter up when I saw them dropping crisp packets right on the pavement.” (15 August)

“This road has not been swept in months, leaves are now a major issue, causing blocked drains and dangerous conditions for pedestrians walking down Charlton Lane” (10 November)

“After 2+ months this side of the road on Bramhope Lane still hasn’t been swept.” (6 October)

It goes on. There are also numerous reports of flytipping in Charlton Lane and at the Woolwich Road end of Victoria Way, as well as Gallon Close – another reminder that the “taskforce” appears to be far too narrow in scope, and perhaps has been partly influenced by lobbying rather than data.

Has the taskforce worked for you? Did you even notice any difference? Please share your experiences below.

54 thoughts on “Dirty Charlton: Councillors to discuss Greenwich’s struggling street cleaning service

  1. MiceElf November 24, 2016 / 08:31

    I don’t bother with Fix my Street any more. However, I find a Tweet @RoyalGreenwich generally (although not always) is much more effective.

  2. E. blakemore November 24, 2016 / 08:46

    I have lived in Charlton for over 20 odd years and I have never seen so many leaves being left on pavements and roadsides never being cleared. Even the flats where I live nobody has cleared them don’t see a caretaker for long, when one does arrive nothing’s done and disappears. What is wrong with our country, dirty Britain.

  3. Jill November 24, 2016 / 10:04

    Don’t run away with the idea that the CCRA area is living in the lap of privilege – my street was swept this morning only after weeks of wet, slippery leaves had built up and the dangerous, loose paving stone I nearly fell over has still not been fixed.

  4. pacelli58 November 24, 2016 / 11:34

    Well done Darryl. No way streets are swept regularly. The website still says all residential roads cleaned weekly. Just not so Pat

    Sent from my iPhone


  5. Darryl November 24, 2016 / 12:33

    I’ve gone into the post to correct a couple of typos and to add Gallon Close as a flytipping hotspot (which it is).

    I think there’s two issues here, which overlap: one is a historically-underfunded service that’s hit serious problems – Charlton is by no means the only neglected area – and the attitude of local councillors to complaints about it (which is either to go into denial or to lash out, although I should say I’ve had no issues with the 3 Charlton councillors in this regard).

    MiceElf – I’d persist with Fix My Street because reports on there are the evidence base we need. I feel sorry for the council comms team having to deal with reports simply because the street teams are so inept.

    The second is the allocation of resources locally – you’d expect resources to be deployed for areas in need, but in Charlton it looks like lobbying has *diverted* resources from where they are actually needed. My photographs show that’s what has happened at Victoria Way. But as Jill points out – even that approach hasn’t seemed to have worked; street sweeping seems to be carried out at random rather than systematically. Because of a lack of communication from the council, it’s impossible to even start to work out what has gone wrong.

    • MiceElf November 24, 2016 / 12:51

      OK I’ll put it on Fix my Street too. I’ve just this minute tweeted yet another flytip on the corner of Hawkins Terrace and Hillreach.
      I take your point about comms having to field complaints about flytipping and so on, but if they can react reasonably swiftly, why can’t the cleansing teams? And why aren’t Councillors holding officers to account and demanding answers.
      Whilst we all appreciate the scale of the cuts, it seems a crazy system that sees bin lorries ignoring rubbish and then sending out a separate vehicle to remove it. That seems to be poor management and operatives sticking to letter of their schedule instead of using common sense.

      • kathy Kelly November 25, 2016 / 23:24

        Have any of you seen the amount of man power constantly clearing/cleaning around Woolwich?? Have any of you seen the state of Woolwich Road opposite M&S, between the BP petrol station and Rathmore Road? Would anyone be brave enough to venture up Rathmore Road? With a camera if possible. you think you have problems-please see for yourselves how Greenwich Councils planning decisions has affected us, The Streets ARE NOT CLEANED. The rubbish from take away’s, subway, costa, M&s,sainsburys, the broken glass, the beer cans. Plus the leaves,( which are the least of our problems). So Victoria Way is a bit better, but could you find someone to help with Rathmore and Throughton Roads

  6. Rosemary November 24, 2016 / 12:50

    Elliscombe Road (in the CCRA area but not – except for the very bottom of the street – in the taskforce area) has not been swept for ages. Parts of the pavement have been so covered in wet, slippery leaves that I have taken to walking in the road because it’s safer. After the recent high winds, however, most of the leaves that haven’t blown away are now wedged between kerbs and the wheels of parked cars – and this typically leads to the drains becoming blocked and, in turn, to localised flooding at the bottom of the road if there is heavy rain.

    I’ve also been very concerned about the condition of Warren Walk steps leading from Elliscombe Road and Coombe Lodge up to the top of Charlton Church Lane. Lots of reports of flytipping and damaged fencing were logged on Fix My Street, and a few weeks ago some clearing up was done and some of the missing fence panels were replaced. However, one section, near the bottom, was left untouched – and my subsequent report of this via Fix My Street produced the response after several weeks that it was not RB Greenwich’s responsibility. I tweeted this on 29 October asking whose responsibility it was and have to date had no response from @Royal_Greenwich or from anyone else.

  7. Paul C November 24, 2016 / 12:55

    Overlapping issues here as Darryl says. On the one hand the street teams are clearly struggling and of course cuts to local govt must play a large part in that. But it’s the communication thing that really gets to me.

    I emailed the environmental team at the council a week ago, letting them know that I was part of a group of local residents who were up for organising litter picks and could they let me know when the streets we live on were scheduled for sweeps so we could plug the gaps for maximum usefulness. No reply. I emailed all 3 local Charlton Cllrs last Wednesday about a local issue, not heard a word from any of them. I appreciate people are busy, but replies saying ‘Thanks for your reply, it is currently taking us x days to reply’ seems a sensible start.

    Re Fix My Street, as of this morning the 2 mattresses and other junk dumped on Coxmount Road earlier in the week are still there. It’s a regular dumping ground, hopefully one of the councils ‘flytipping hit squads’ will get around to it soon enough, they certainly have the FixMyStreet data to show how often it’s a problem.

    Don’t want to end on a downer! Took my kids out on a trial run for litter pick last week. Filled 4 bags and was actually a lot of fun. Filled one bag just on the bridge over the train tracks at bottom of Charlton Lane alone! Tbf, we used litter grabbers that the council gave me last year during one of their Local Champion Cleaners drives (may not have been called that).

  8. Darryl November 24, 2016 / 12:57

    I’ve also added a map from FixMyStreet showing how the taskforce area is, frankly, hopelessly wrong.

  9. ThePirateKing November 24, 2016 / 13:26

    Thanks for highlighting all this, Darryl, and all your work on it. Clearly several things have gone wrong or at least failed to work with the current street cleaning arrangements.

    I’ve posted on this site before about what I personally believe is the disproportunate amount of resources and funds and influence that the CCRA have in our beloved Charlton. They represent 13 streets out of the whole of Charlton. (Yes, good on them for fighting for their own little bit of Charlton. Fair dues. But is it really fair if it makes other less organised places worse off?)

    But I’m amazed to read here that the CCRA have – in effect – got their own Street Cleaning “Taskforce” despite their area not even being close to the worse littered or uncleaned bit of Charlton. Surely some mistake? One has to question exactly how this has come about? I’ve posted on this site before about how the CCRA have a very very cosy relationship with councillor Gary Parker. It would be interesting to known if he was anything to do with the Community Safety & Environment Scrutiny Panel? Is there any way that we could find out?


  10. Chris November 25, 2016 / 10:24

    It’s amazing isn’t it. The CCRA (of which I am a ‘non-active’ member) is being criticised for apparently having an effect. The statement that it makes ‘less organised’ places worse off is disingenuous. Does that mean people should default to the lowest common denominator — ie do nothing and see what the council does with it’s limited resources? What is wrong in lobbying for your neighbourhood?
    For the insulting ‘cosy’ relationship, how about ‘working’ relationship?
    Blimey, with some people you can’t win.

    • ThePirateKing November 25, 2016 / 13:45

      Hello Chris – I make the point above that I don’t blame the CCRA for fighting to make their area nice. Fair play. But looking at Darryl’s maps above, one has to question if the CCRA area was really in need of the special “Taskforce” that it was assigned? Was it really the worse area in Charlton? The maps from Darryl strongly suggest otherwise.

      • MiceElf November 25, 2016 / 13:59

        There’s a simple answer to your view that resources are disproportionately allocated to localities which actively organise themselves. Whether or not that is true in this case I don’t know, but all that other localities with concerns need to do is to organise themselves and work with the Council to achieve their aims. Its very easy to criticise – and getting involved and energising the local community takes a bit of effort, but the result generally means much greater community cohesion and tangible results.

        • ThePirateKing November 25, 2016 / 14:09

          Could the answer just possibly be to allocate resources fairly in the first place? Rather than to groups that have a local councillor dancing like a puppet to their tune. Just a thought.

      • MiceElf November 25, 2016 / 14:12

        Well, I’ve no idea who the local Councillor is that you refer to. But all I’d say is that Councillors are elected to represent their constituents. If they do it well, where’s the problem? If they don’t, don’t vote for them. Or stand yourself to get something done.

        • ThePirateKing November 25, 2016 / 14:22

          I’m not sure that’s a strong argument against expecting local councillors to allocate our limited local resources in a way that is fair and to where they are most needed.

  11. MiceElf November 25, 2016 / 14:33

    Are you saying that Councillors should prioritise other constituencies over there own? It’s their job to fight for their own patch. It’s a matter for the cabinet to have the overview. And in any event it’s just your assertion that the present allocation is unfair. Where is your evidence base? I have no idea if the group you refer to is unfairly favoured. I don’t live in it and have no knowledge of it, but I do know that the area around the station has been a disgraceful mess for some time.

    • ThePirateKing November 25, 2016 / 14:45

      Hello MiceElf – if you read the article to which we are both commenting then you’ll find that it offers all the evidence you want in Darryl’s excellent maps and comments.

      I’m suggesting that Charlton Councillors like Gary Parker should allocate resources within Charlton where they are most needed instead of where their friends live. My evidence for saying this is the above article by Darryl which suggests that a special “Taskforce” has been allocated to clean up the CCRA area instead of where it would be most needed in other more dirty areas of Charlton that have less vocal / organised residents.

      My main point is that I think our limited local resources should go where they are most needed.

  12. Andy November 25, 2016 / 15:03

    Not the sound of distant drums, but distant axes grinding here I think. Asserting that ANY councillor is pushing for what his or her friends want is thin ice. If there is any evidence of cronyism or any other inappropriate behaviour put it to the proper authorities. This article is NOT the proof you reckon it is especially as the area with the Task Force includes Church Lane, Floyd Road, Valley Grove and what looks like Anchor and Hope Lane. From what I see when I cross this area four times a day is that it is mucky all over. So if the CCRA is getting special treatment it sure doesn’t look like it. If a Task Force is going to get to work it will only bring this revolting area up to the standard of Charlton Slopes or the Village. I agree with other posters that if people have got the get up and go to press for improvements then it is churlish to have a go at them – but we have yet to see these improvements.

    • MiceElf November 25, 2016 / 15:12

      Quite so. I’ve just looked at Fix my Street and I see the greatest number of reports are around the station and near the football ground. What a surprise.
      I agree with Andy that making snide comments about ‘friends’ and ‘cosy relationships’ is quite unacceptable. I have no connection with the Council, don’t know the Councillor or the group referred to and the tone of those comments is beyond unpleasant.

    • ThePirateKing November 25, 2016 / 15:21

      Could the answer just possibly be to allocate resources fairly in the first place?

      • Gary Parker November 25, 2016 / 17:39

        Mr Donkin, your comments are totally misplaced. The Community Safety & Environment Scrutiny Panel which I Chair does not allocate, manage or provide resources for street cleaning and related services in Charlton or anywhere else, it reviews these services and its policies and comments and scrutinises them- that is why it is called a scrutiny panel !. I am one of three councillors in Charlton of which you are fully aware and we do not as others have said, manage these services directly or allocate resources.
        .Resources are managed by council officers under the political management of a cabinet member, in this case Cllr Jackie Smith and the wider cabinet as appropriate. To insinuate anything else is absurd, if there are problems with street cleaning locally, we take them up as casework, that is our job.
        That is how local goverment works in Greenwich, service delivery on a departmental basis, with scrutiny by ward members like myself.

        • ThePirateKing November 25, 2016 / 17:56

          Hello Gary – Thanks for your reply. It does seem an extraordinary coincidence that the “taskforce” area covers the CCRA area in the way that it does. As noted by Darryl in the article above. Given previous questions that have quite reasonable arisen regarding the CCRA’s influence you can see how it would raise eyebrows.
          Could you address Darryl’s questions below please? Thank you if you can.

          • Gary Parker November 25, 2016 / 18:31

            It was decided by council officers as they manage the service ,as I was not involved in this I suggest you take this issue up with Greenwich Environmental Services.

            • Darryl November 26, 2016 / 12:23

              The trouble is, Gary, you’ve brought things up for me in your role as councillor, but have been ignored by Greenwich Environmental Services.

              Then we see some streets swept and not others… and it’s hard not to start putting two and two together, even if we end up making five.

              How do we fix this?

  13. Darryl November 25, 2016 / 15:31

    It’s actually not as black and white as the CCRA v Rest of the World narrative makes out, as some of their streets such as Inverine Road and Delafield Road seem to have been neglected by the taskforce too, so perhaps they’re not going to be as delighted with the results as some would expect. But when you see the boundary for street sweeping appears to be the boundary of their patch (and the same seemed to be the case yesterday) – and the council report explicitly states their involvement in this taskforce – then it’s right to ask questions.

    I’m sure the good councillor can look after himself, but two questions are going begging here.

    a) why are some residential streets getting what appears to be preferential treatment, while others are neglected? Are resources being diverted from streets such as Charlton Lane to super-serve others?

    b) how was the taskforce area drawn up? Anyone with eyes and a working nose knows that Floyd Road had a terrible problem with rubbish and flytipping. But Wellington Gardens and Swallowfield Road in preference to Charlton Lane or Victoria Way? Why?

    (Edit: I should probably also add that individual councillors’ ability to influence things in their own wards are often limited, and they are often the last to know about issues)

  14. Andy November 25, 2016 / 16:16

    With stretched resources only so much can be done at a time. My guess is that one bit of Charlton will get the Task Force for a while and then it will be moved on to another area when that place has given the council enough ear-ache. The Wellington Gardens and Sundorne Road that I have walked along are often foul with dog mess, bins left on the street, broken paving slabs, fly tipping, potholes and torn bin bags. It all depends on where you look and when – every picture is just that – a snap shot of one moment.
    It is really the council officers who are not responding to FixMyStreet issues. Councillors can only PASS ON what they are given as Darryl concedes. As Mice Elf says the tone and implications of these posts is beyond unpleasant and no credit to the posters. Instead of this whingeathon about favouritism would it not be better to organize some group action yourselves? I am sure the councillor can well take care of himself, but I find these digs at people who have taken community action and might be getting results (case unproven) nasty in the extreme.
    I am not a member of the CCRA and I have no connection with any councillors. I do like to see fair play. And if you don’t like the Task Force area have a go at Greenwich Environmental Services not the council tax payers of some streets in Charlton.

  15. Paul C November 25, 2016 / 17:26

    Not sure I can see much evidence of a nasty beyond unpleasant whingeathon Andy, and not sure anyone is having a pop at the CCRA. I’d be interested in hearing answers to the two questions Darryl poses above.

  16. Jill November 25, 2016 / 18:04

    I’d like to remind everyone that this is part of a pilot involving areas of Plumstead, Abbey Wood AND Charlton addressing the problems that currently exist and with a view to a future of funding cuts. Hope you’ve all signed up to make your comments at next week’s council l meeting.

  17. Pineapple Poll November 26, 2016 / 10:13

    Mr parker is right. In a democracy constituents meet elected representatives to solve problems. It is vexatious to cry foul about the way things work. If either side fears being on the wrong end of a smear campaign they might stop taking part. Not a shining result for democracy.
    It is clear that the Pirate King and a motley crew have issues with some parties. The grudge is old. Allegations fly with not a shred of supporting evidence. Perhaps a case of put up or shut up.

    • Darryl November 26, 2016 / 12:17

      “If either side fears being on the wrong end of a smear campaign they might stop taking part.”

      Side issue and I don’t want to get sidetracked, but what makes you think we’re not in this situation locally?

      Do you have any views on why do some streets are swept and others not?

    • ThePirateKing November 26, 2016 / 16:35

      Hello Pineapple Poll –
      I think it’s entirely reasonable to question how things work. It is an extraordinary extraordinary coincidence that the “Taskforce” area just so happens to include 99% of the CCRA area and very little outside it, despite other areas needing it more.
      I don’t have a grudge against the CCRA, everyone should fight for their area and help make their own streets better where they can do so. But I do have an issue with how a residents association that represents only 13 streets out of all of Charlton often seems to be given such influence over local affairs. That’s a reasonable concern, expressed reasonably and I’ll continue to express such concerns when I see examples like the “Taskforce.”

  18. Jill November 27, 2016 / 10:25

    Because it’s easier and cheaper for the Council to latch on to a ready formed group who have already shown interest in their environment and are prepared to get off their backsides and do something about it – CCRA regularly report issues of concern and have an annual Community Day of clearing up the neighbourhood. RAs and tenants groups will have a contact and are likely to report back; however, it’s incumbent upon them to be open and honest in reporting their findings and not a mouth piece of the Council.

    • Darryl November 28, 2016 / 10:35

      I think you’re right, Jill – the problem is what happens if you are an individual outside these structures who hits brick walls when reporting street problems.

      This was something this was meant to highlight, but heaven knows what it’s become now.

  19. Diane November 27, 2016 / 16:06

    ‘Perceptions that streets are not as clean as they have been in the past are just perceptions…’ I would beg to differ. I live in Peninusla Ward and it is filthy and noticeably more so over t
    he past 12 months. One of the problems on my street (Gurdon Road) is the removal of wheelie bins by the council so that residents of the flats at one end of the street are now leaving black sacks out for collection, which are often torn to shreds by foxes and the contents strewn over the street for days on end. I understand that the rationale for getting rid of the wheelie bins was because they were blocking the pavement, but could the bright sparks on the council not have come up with a better solution than one that exacerbates a problem which they already seem to have no control over, i.e filthy streets? When I lived in a flat in a converted Victorian house, my downstairs neighbour and I agreed to share bins and thus halved the number of bins cluttering up the pavement outside our house – a simple solution that could have been considered on Gurdon Road. As well as a bit more thought to the consequences of stupid decisions such as removing bins, I would also like to see a bit more of an effort from the council to discourage people from littering and fly tipping. Although we have a particular issue with a lack of bins on our street, the main reason Charlton is so dirty is because people drop litter and fly tip. I don’t understand the mentality of litter droppers, but I would happily support investment into educating people that littering and fly tipping is unnessary and deeply anti social. Another thought could be a community initiative for local people with cars to offer to do tip runs for folk without cars. I love going to the recycling centre on nathan way and would happily volunteer to do the odd trip for a neighbour if it meant their little piles of detritus were not dumped on my road. A bit of creative thinking from the council would not go amiss, but I am not holding my breath…

  20. Andy November 28, 2016 / 07:58

    When I moved to Charlton I thought it was a nice friendly place. I know better now. Jill has summed it up nicely. Instead of griping about one little group because you think they have been successful, ask them for some advice on how it’s done and do something yourselves. On the other hand with the write ups you’re giving them they might tell you to do one.

  21. T. Lister November 28, 2016 / 10:08

    Wow. Councillor meets residents. Hardly Watergate is it?

  22. Joe Thorne November 28, 2016 / 10:19

    We should all value Free Speech and a free press but theres a difference between asking questions and making statements that imply improper relationships. These posts are stuffed with allegations of this sort. These can land the writer into a load of trouble. Still it adds to the gaiety of the nation, so carry on chaps.

  23. he other Darryl November 28, 2016 / 12:52

    Damn, if only I’d known about this task force. Regardless of which streets they’ve earmarked, they seem to be little difference. And furthermore, I swept up the leaves from the pavement outside my own house on Inverine Road over the weekend. Who do I write to for a refund?

  24. Paul C November 29, 2016 / 12:11

    Neither Coxmount nor Charlton Lane were swept yesterday (not the bits of Charlton Lane I was on anyway). Coxmount in particular is a flytipping hotspot so would benefit being part of the taskforce. Still awaiting email response from council team (sent about 5 days before this post was published), when I hear back I will request Coxmount is added.

    • ThePirateKing December 5, 2016 / 20:27

      Thank you for posting the link.

      I’m not sure it’s any kind of silver bullet though. The big three flytips that I’ve dealt with around my way near Maryon Wilson Park have all been out-of-town cowboy builders using our SE7 parks and roads as a free dumping place. Happy to report that at least one of them was found guilty in court as a result of evidence we took from the fly tip itself.

      It’s possible that the “Concentrations of fly tipping incidents being particularly prominent in Plumstead and Charlton…” are because both these areas contain (and are know to contain) large green areas (parks and commons) that are easily accessible by small lorries driven by idiots.

      The report seems to suggest on Page 25 that a lot of fly tipping is being done by people from Houses of Multiple Occupancy who are (and I quote directly) “in some cases are avoiding detection”.

      Really? If I was laying low and “avoiding detection” would I really think “Now, what I want to do tonight is say safe and stay hidden, so I think what would do the trick is if I left my hiding place and did some high profile fly tipping right on my own doorstep. There’s no way that could possibly go wrong.”

      I’m not sure I would, but then I wouldn’t vote for Trump so what do I know?

      Food for thought.

  25. MiceElf December 6, 2016 / 07:16

    Firstly, respect to you for investigating and bringing a flytipper to justice. I imagine it entailed a significant amount of time and patient liaison with the police.

    I’m sure your comment about accessible green space is valid. Perhaps erecting bollards round the edge preventing vehicles from entering would go some way to ameliorating the problem.

    As for flytipping on ones own doorstep, sadly, I think it’s all too common. If there are eight or nine people living in one house it’s all too easy for an unregistered landlord or other, to dump a cheap mattress on the roadside at 2.00 am. Take a look at the FB group Plumstead People and you will see endless no resolution threads, together with pictures (sometimes of the dumpers too!) about this very problem. You wouldn’t dump and neither would I, but there are plenty of lazy, selfish people who think nothing of it. They have no commitment to the locality and care nothing for the public space.

  26. Paul C December 13, 2016 / 15:52

    Thought I’d update you on the response I received from the council. The good news is that I received a response from a nice man, he apologised for late response and has been very helpful since. Neither Coxmount not Charlton Lane were swept on the Monday after he emailed me but when I let him know he flagged them up and they were both done the Monday after. He also offered to meet up and discuss some of the issues I raised which I am taking him up on, all good.

    There was another matter I raised with him. There are two bus stops at the bottom of Charlton Lane by the rail tracks. Bus stop A is on the Charlton Lane side and has a bin. It is generally quite tidy. But the bus stop on the river side of Woolwich Road, outside the new Car Auctions place (bus stop B) doesn’t have a bin and is always a mess. I emailed the nice man and asked if bus stop B could have a bin. A few days later I heard back that not only had they agreed my request for a bin but it was already there. I was more happy than I really should have been. I even took the kids to the stop at the weekend with litter pickers and we filled it up. Today I wasn’t cycling to North Greenwich as normal but getting the bus. I went to bus stop A. ‘This is much messier than usual I thought, why is there so much crap on the ground?’ Turns out the council had put a bin at bus stop B. And taken it from bus stop A. Still trying not to laugh. But back to the drawing board.

  27. Jill December 13, 2016 / 17:19

    10 out of 10 for trying, Paul!

  28. Rosemary December 20, 2016 / 13:50

    Pleased to see a team of half a dozen workers clearing leaves in Hornfair Road this morning.

  29. MiceElf December 22, 2016 / 13:48

    Another problem in Charlton.

    ‘Sadly this is not the first time and I’m sure it won’t be the last: I saw an RLBG employee a while back in Cemetery Lane pick up a sack of rubbish as if he expected to find something in it, he then proceeded to empty the contents – a load of paint/distemper scrapings – all over the road.’

    This was shared by a local resident.

  30. MiceElf December 22, 2016 / 13:50

    And another one from another Charlton resident.

    ‘This morning around 9-9.30am I noticed something untoward being carried out by a royal borough greenwich employee. A waste collection employee to be exact.

    The person in question took it upon themselves to dump grey sacks outside the garden walls of no.19,23, 26 Heathwood Gardens and unknown to me my house (no.17). I only managed to get half the registration plate of the pick up van, but I have reported this to the council as this is deemed as fly tipping. The registration number is LH13 and its a white van which usually collects old material such as chairs, bikes, mattresses etc.

    I have been told the waste wont be collected until tomorrow. ‘

    • ThePirateKing December 23, 2016 / 01:18

      The above two comments from MiceElf came from Mr Chas’ Charlton Parkside Hub (great name.) There was a third comment in reply to those that I’m sure MiceElf intended to post as well…

      “As I walked down Woodland Terrace this morning, I passed 2 friendly Borough empoyees clearing the pavement of leaves making it much easier for me to walk down. On my way back I saw 2 unobtrusive bags containing the leaves. As your correspondents may not realise, this makes it easier for everyone to walk up and down the pavement. I’m pleased that this service exists.” – Richard.

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