Colourful signage encouraging us to take our litter home
Environmental charity Keep Scotland Beautiful has joined forces with South Ayrshire Council this week to roll out its national drive to clean up Scotland's roadsides. With 88% of adults in the South of Scotland agreeing that roadside litter creates a negative impression of Scotland*, the campaign aims to tackle the behaviour which is ruining the view for all road users.
South Ayrshire is the second local authority in Scotland to actively support the national campaign to urge road users to take personal responsibility for their litter, encouraging them to "give their litter a lift, and take it home".
Representatives from Keep Scotland Beautiful joined South Ayrshire Council's Waste Management and Recycling team, the Council's Head of Neighbourhood Services Mike Newall and Wido the crisp bag to launch the local campaign which is set to focus on tackling litter in the lay-bys along the A77.
Littering anywhere is illegal and puts an unnecessary burden on council resources. Weekly litter picking at the 19 lay-bys of local A roads have recorded an average of 54 bags of rubbish per week - approximately ten bags per lay-by per month. If this is not collected it can pose a danger to drivers, threaten wildlife and ruin views from the road.
Following the removal of bins from lay-bys in order to address flytipping, the initiative will monitor the litter levels and test out the effectiveness of new signage encouraging drivers to take their litter home.
Mike Newall, Head of Neighbourhood Services at South Ayrshire Council said: "South Ayrshire is a lovely part of the world and we don't want our picturesque scenery blighted by litter.
"We were keen to support this campaign for the benefit of both locals and visitors and I am hopeful the colourful, imaginative and engaging signs encourage people to take their litter home.
"Where they don't dispose of litter properly, we are more than prepared to back up the message with a £80 littering fixed penalty notice, or a £200 penalty for fly tipping, but hopefully the majority of people want to keep South Ayrshire looking beautiful too."
Carole Noble, Operations Director with Keep Scotland Beautiful, said: " As a direct response to the scale of our country's roadside litter problem, we recently launched a nationwide campaign with a wide range of stakeholders. We are delighted to now be rolling this out in partnership with South Ayrshire Council.
"We recognise that to tackle this disgusting and illegal habit, we all need to work together, to raise awareness of the problem of throwing litter from a vehicle, and to trial innovative solutions to change current littering behaviours.
"Across South Ayrshire, and the rest of Scotland, the message is simple - give your litter a lift, take it home!"