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Your Borough Of Poole


Things you should know about litter!

  • Littering is a criminal offence; you can be fined up to £2,500, or you may receive a fixed penalty notice.
  • The offence is committed under Section 87 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990.
  • There is no precise definition of litter. It can mean a small item (e.g. a chocolate wrapper) or larger item (e.g. a bag of rubbish) or items scattered around. Discarded food can be litter. The Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act 2005 has included cigarette butts and chewing gum as litter.
  • The littering offence applies to public open land e.g. roads, pavements, motorways, parks and beaches. Different laws apply to rubbish on private land.
  • Drivers who throw litter from vehicles can be prosecuted. Vehicle registration details are taken and the authorities can trace the owner through the DVLA.
  • Fly tipping – being potentially more serious and hazardous than littering is an offence under the waste legislation. On conviction the fine is up to £50,000 or twelve months imprisonment or both.
  • Every day RSPCA inspectors rescue pet and wild animals trapped or hurt by litter.

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Litter Picks

Environmental & Consumer Protection Services are able to provide volunteers who organise litter picks with gloves, litter pickers, bags, etc.  We can also arrange to collect the waste after the litter pick (providing this has taken place on Council land).  

Community Litter Picks - Community Clear Up Day

Community Clear Up Day is a "national spring clean" backed by the Government, that aims to spruce up the country's high street, residential and business areas, villages and parks.

The official start date of this spring clean is Saturday 21st March, but clear-ups can be at any time to suit volunteers.

Whether you hold an event with friends, neighbours, or work colleagues, we can help by providing litter pickers, gloves and bags as well as collecting the rubbish at the end of the event.

The equipment is loaned on first-come-first-served basis, so if you are wanting to take part please contact the Environmental Development Team on 01202 261700 or email environment@poole.gov.uk

For more information, including posters to promote your event visit: http://thegreatbritishhighstreet.co.uk/clearupday

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The Big Tidy Up 

Keep Britain Tidy are promoting an event called The Big Tidy Up.  Volunteers are encouraged to organise a litter pick and log the details of this on their website.  Why not join the Big Tidy Up today and become part of the network of people working together on this project?  For further information, to register, and to receive your tidy up kit visit  www.thebigtidyup.org

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Doing your bit

Everyone can help:

  • Set an example - by not littering

  • Put your litter in a bin.  If there is no bin available, take your litter home.

  • Don’t throw litter from your vehicle.  Use a car litter-bag or wait until you find a bin.  Never empty car ash trays onto the ground.

  • Cigarette ends, matchsticks and chewing gum are small but they’re still litter.  So is discarded food.  Please use the bin.

  • Make sure household and business waste is securely contained so that it doesn’t escape and become litter.

  • Everyone is responsible for their own waste – never dump it. 
    Extra household rubbish can be taken to the Nuffield Household Waste and Recycling Centre.

  • The Council is working in partnership with Dorset Reclaim to collect large items such as furniture or beds.

  • If litter has built up and become an eyesore, report it.

  • Keep your own garden or land litter free.

  • Recycle waste wherever possible 

Remember, we are all responsible for keeping our town and countryside clean.  Your behaviour does make a difference.

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Organising your own litter pick

If you are interested in organising a litter pick and would like further information on how to do this please do not hesitate to contact us.

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Street Watchers

The Borough of Poole is still recruiting volunteers to take part in Street Watchers. This is a scheme that was launched in February 2008 and encourages residents within the Borough to take part in community events, litter-picks, and reporting environmental issues (such as graffiti removal, dog fouling, fly posting etc) for us to deal with. If you are interested in finding out more about this scheme please contact Liz Williams (01202) 261700 or email prideinpoole@poole.gov.uk.

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Contact us


01202 261700

Text Relay
18001 01202 261700

Environmental and Consumer Protection
Unit 1
Newfields Business Park
2 Stinsford Road
BH17 0NF