Arbroath residents have hit out at what has been described as a “public health hazard” caused by fly-tipping in their area
Items ranging from needles to sanitary products and car tyres have been left dumped on the beach forcing locals to undertake volunteer clean-ups to clear away the items.
One resident, Lorna Cameron spoke of her frustration at what she described as the “ongoing problem” of rubbish being left in public spaces around the town.
“The first time I came to Arbroath, I could not believe the amount of litter that had been left on the beach. But the problem is not just there, it’s all over,” she said.
“I have even seen people sitting in their cars throwing litter out of the window. Things like cigarette packets were among the rubbish left. At a beach clean organised last year beach we collected 24 bags of rubbish within an hour of approximately 30 metre stretch.
“It’s crazy and it’s definitely a serious health issue. People coming to Arbroath don’t want to be seeing that along the beach.”
Lorna believes the root of the problem facing Arbroath is the lack of facilities available for people to dispose of their rubbish, as well as limited deterrents in palace for would be offenders.
She added: “There’s not enough bins around the town and the ones that are there are overflowing with rubbish.
“There should also be signs up informing people of the penalties they face if there were to fly-tip or litter.”
The 52-year-old was also critical of Angus council, who she claimed was passing the responsibility of clearing the mess onto the local people.
She added: “There have been community groups who have organised beach cleans but the council are passing the buck.
“I contacted them and it took me more than an hour to get someone from Angus Council to answer the phone. When I did there was a lot of complacency and resistance about my many suggestions of what could get done to help fix the problem.”
Lorna is hoping simple measures can be taken to address the problem and discourage people from leaving their rubbish but admits she has been left disappointment by the response of the local authority to her suggestions.
“But the council’s response was that they don’t have the funding to install extra bins around the town,” she added.
“They also spoke about their adopt a street scheme where you can help keep that street clean but that’s the council’s responsibility.”
A spokesman for Angus Council said: “We would encourage anyone who sees incidents of fly-tipping to report them to us by using our online form or by calling ACCESSLine on 03452 777 778.
“Enquiries rely upon information and evidence. If you see evidence of fly-tipping, please take a note of what you have seen – that can be the location and a description of what has been dumped. If you actually saw fly tipping as it happened, then please try to make a note of the vehicle involved and, if possible its registration number.
“Individual volunteers and local community groups play an essential part in tackling the litter that is left behind by irresponsible members of society. We take great pride in the fact that six Angus beaches, including Arbroath, achieved Keep Scottland Beautiful’s Scottish Beach Award in 2019 – an award that recognises the best beaches across the country and acts as the benchmark for local environmental quality.”