Recent disquiet about Rubbish and waste issues on Harringay Online led to one member asking the Ladder residents' group to host a meeting about it.
Ian Sygrave gathered a handy group of folk from Haringey Council and Veolia to attend. At the meeting last week they set out their stall and responded to a wide range of residents' concerns.
The meeting was a well-attended as local residents' meetings go and there was plenty of involvement in what was a well-run event. I thought it was useful both in distilling the general sense of what the primary issues are as well as getting clear and unequivocal commitments from Haringey and Veolia on dealing with them.
Whilst the causes of rubbish are too complex to be fully covered in a relatively short residents' meeting, the group did appear to reach a consensus on what the key issues are.
Whilst Haringey admitted that they have no magic wand to resolve the issues, their response seemed pretty clear to me and by and large constructive. Almost without exception, for every type of incident, either at the meeting or afterwards in my exchanges with them, they made a commitment to resolve each issue within, what I think seems to be a reasonable time-frame.
To enable them take action, the Council need to be made aware of issues as and when they happen on an ongoing basis. With the current financial constraints, it's an approach that calls for residents to get involved and to be prepared to interact with the Council to mobilise resources, but surely it's worth giving a go.
So, following the meeting, I liaised with Haringey. Then, with their agreement I drew up a list of all the rubbish disposal issues that were raised at the meeting. For each issue I've set out the Council's commitment to deal with the issue, along with the available contact channels. I sent the list to the Council for comment and approval and they have approved it today. In effect they've signed off on the commitments it records.
It's certainly an advance for me. Bar anything I may have missed, there is now clarity on what issues we can report, how to report them, what the Council will do about it and how quickly.
One of Haringey's waste disposal bosses said, "If you come across any of these issues, all you have to do is contact us and we'll get it sorted". I believed that he meant what he said. So let's test it out. Got a waste problem? Find it on the list and report it!
It may be an idea for people to share successes or failures they encounter, both here and/or at future LCSP meetings.
The list is attached below.
Thanks for this Hugh. I had meant to attend but couldn't at the last minute.
Will save these contacts and use them assuming they meant what they said.
Hi, what’s the best thing to do about rubbish in parks? I’m talking about constant high levels of litter in undergrowth, not specific incidents. I’ve tried logging this with Haringey (for Chestnuts Park, which, along the Cornwall road/Falmer Road sides are just horrible) but nothing ever seems to happen. You cannot walk a single step without spotting plastic/food packaging/carrier bags/occasional condoms everywhere.
I don’t know. And I’m sure there will be other questions and concerns that come up. I’ll be happy to collect those and pass them on and see if I can get an answer.
Thanks, that would be great.
I've been told Veolia don't litter pick under bushes
Parks have their own cleaning schedule - some (like Finsbury Park) are daily, others once or twice a week and so on. I understand there isn't a great deal that can be done to change what is by all accounts a very stretched service with timetables already budgeted for, but if there's a particular park that has recurrent problems it's worth taking it up with the council - a group of my neighbours have done this with one of our open spaces with a degree of success.
I am constantly amazed by how spotless Clissold Park constantly is, and how crap Finsbury often is, and absolutely always is after a sunny weekend.
You see piles of rubbish by bins (because they are too small, or there's not enough of them, or they are not emptied (because no one is working over the weekend?). Rubbish is invariably just strewn everywhere a group has felt it appropriate to be left after their impromptu party in the park over the summer.
I just do not get why we cannot keep our parks as clean as Hackney seem to be able to do.
Agreed, it's noticeably worse. I use FP a lot though and it does seem that there have been some recent improvements, additional bins etc - and I've seen teams out cleaning on a Sunday. I think it has been worse in the past.
Is it still the case that Hackney gets more funding from central government?
Hugh - Thank you for coordinating this and pulling it all together. I'd have been at the meeting myself, but my health has been very poor recently. You are doing good work for the local community, and it is much appreciated.
Sorry you're not well Mr Fowler. Best wishes.
Thank you, John, for your good wishes, You are very kind.
I'm glad to know about this meeting, but just a word of caution...
I've attended no less than three similar meetings in Noel Park and the Council Hall in the last 4 years. Lots of words have been spent, lots of commitments. A "Team Noel Park" group was formed (without consulting the local resident association, nor collaborating with it...) that posted fancy flyers through the doors.
And guess what? Nothing has happened. The rubbish is still there, fly tipping is rocketing (especially after the "garden waste tax"), and just two weeks ago a man Veolia complained with me (!!!) about the poor state of our roads. At least I'm not receiving the fancy flyers from Team Noel Park, so there's a bit less rubbish around.
I sincerely hope that it will work in a better way for you, please keep this thread updated.