Council announces street clean-up – just in time for elections

Croydon’s Conservative-run council last night bowed to pressure from the opposition Labour group – and a few prods and pokes from the “Garbage Gallery” compiled by Inside Croydon’s readers – and announced at a Town Hall meeting that it is to spend £100,000 to deal with the problem of fly tipping across our streets.

Expect your neighbourhood to be spick and span come early May… just in time for the local elections.

Croydon Guardian front pageThe announcement comes with not only domestic rubbish spilling across our streets and random bits of furniture dumped on our pavements, but with seriously dangerous industrial waste – asbestos – being left unattended for weeks on end, as revealed by the Croydon Guardian.

As Inside Croydon reported last month, incidents of fly tipping in the borough have more than doubled since the Conservatives were re-elected to the Town Hall in 2010. And that’s just those cases where residents have actually been able to get through on the council’s phone lines to report the piles of garbage left festering on their doorsteps.

According to the council’s own figures, there are now more than 30 episodes of illegal tipping every day of the year.

The increase in fly tipping comes as charges for using council recycling centres have been increased, and following Croydon’s decision to move to fortnightly bin collections.

Given that just a few weeks ago Tory councillors dismissed complaints about the state of the borough’s streets as “a joke”, the £100,000 announced last night looks like an emergency spend by the Tory council ahead of the elections in May. The Conservatives had previously cut £1 million from the borough’s street-cleaning budget.

Last week, Croydon North’s Labour MP, Steve Reed OBE, announced the establishment of a commission to investigate the state of the litter-strewn streets across the north of the borough.

It's a dirty job, but someone's got to do it: Nero Ughwujabo is to chair the commission on the state of Croydon's streets

It’s a dirty job, but someone’s got to do it: Nero Ughwujabo is to chair the commission on the state of Croydon’s streets

The commission is to operate independently of any political party. To be chaired by Nero Ughwujabo, the chief executive of Croydon BME Forum, the commission members include representatives from business, churches, mosques and residents’ associations.

The commission will hold a series of public hearings across Croydon North. The commission aims to submit a final report to the council before the end of the year.

Residents will be able to provide evidence including photographs via a website, by email, or by completing a written questionnaire.

To visit the website, launched this week, click here.

Here's a grubby street scene on Southbridge Road: while local Tory councillors boast about "record" rates of recycling, some flat dwellers simply dump their rubbish on the road. This picture was taken on the afternoon last week after the regular rubbish collection

While Tory councillors boast about “record” rates of recycling, flat dwellers simply dump their rubbish on the road in South Croydon

“I am inviting residents to share their experience of litter, fly tipping and dumped rubbish on local streets,” Ughwujabo said.

“I also want to hear people’s views about how our streets could be kept cleaner. The commission aims to establish the scale of the problem and then make recommendations on how to improve it.  I hope every political party contesting next year’s council elections will look at our final proposals and consider adopting them as part of their manifesto.” 

And don’t forget, you can also send your rubbish pictures to

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News, views and analysis about the people of Croydon, their lives and political times in the diverse and most-populated borough in London. Based in Croydon and edited by Steven Downes. To contact us, please email
This entry was posted in 2014 council elections, Croydon Council, Croydon North, Environment, Fly tipping, Refuse collection, Steve Reed MP and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Council announces street clean-up – just in time for elections

  1. Peter Rogers says:

    we live by Whitgift School so obviously get a daily litter collection but this stopped during the school holidays. I’m guessing this is just a coincidence

  2. In Thornton Heath, all the pavements and alleyways are public open litter bins and rubbish dumps, the council contractors are very efficient in picking everything up, but in my view, encourages fly-tippers, giving them the thumbs up to fly-tip, as things will get cleaned up. There had been TWO litter clean-up campaign posters in the 20 years that I’ve been living here, none of those were backed with any enforcement what-so-ever, in fact, the situation deteriorates by the day. I’d very much like to be optimistic with this commission, as it’s the first effort of any kind targeting the problem in this specific area, but only time can tell. Here is a link to my ‘rubbish photos’.

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