Save our Woods! Stop fly-tipping and litter on Rochester Way

Save our Woods! Stop fly-tipping and litter on Rochester Way

7 November 2020
Signatures: 206Next Goal: 500
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Why this petition matters

Started by G Jerw

My name is Georgia and I have been an Environmental Champion in Greenwich since the pandemic started. I have done a lot of litter-picking over this year, with some areas no longer being problematic due to the warm weather ending and the Parks Team returning from furlough.

However, there is one area that continues to produce at least two bags of rubbish a week and is only a mile long. That area is Rochester Way.

From Deansfield Primary School to Falconwood Station, there is constant litter produced, as well as extensive fly-tipping. As I have mentioned, I can collect two bags a week and the council must collect more. Since March I have had to report 16 incidences to be fixed by the council, most recently dumped car pipes, building materials, and a printer.

Despite this mile-long area having a school, four bus stops and a station, one side of the road only has one bin. This means that there is only one opportunity for people to dispose of litter, with no opportunities at bus stops. The road is full of commuters to and from Falconwood Station, with litter often being dumped out of the cars parked on the road. Since the pandemic people seem to be keen to dispose face masks as soon as they get off public transport. On one occasion I collected 28 face masks in this area.

Littering is not always an isolated incident, there are repeat offenders. Someone ties a black bag of four cans and a bag of crisps up neatly, yet dumps them onto the kerbside, every week. At one point there was a weekly Tesco bag tied up in the same place full of used nappies.

I am very protective of this area and deeply stressed by the litter as this road surrounds woodlands and open spaces. On one side of the road you have Shepherdleas’ woods, the other Falconwood Field and Oxleas Woodlands. These woodlands are incredibly beautiful and very important. Oxleas in particular is a SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest), owing to the rare species that are within it. Although I try my best to remove the litter, I cannot get it all, and sadly so much of it is blown into the woods.

Seeing the disrespect for open spaces in the area really damages my mental health, and I know that other residents are dismayed by it. Additionally, my Mum is a teacher and gives her only time off at the weekend to help me litter-pick in this area as I am too mentally unwell to be going alone.

I am calling for signatures to raise awareness and support for this issue to present to those that can action the following in this area:

·         More bins on the road – for more opportunities to dispose of litter, particularly by bus stops.

·         Anti-litter signs – to make it clear that this is not accepted and to discourage further individuals from contributing to what is already there.

·         Rochester Way marked as a priority area – for the council to maintain this area as much as park areas.

·         Monitoring and fines – whether this is cameras or wardens to enforce what is a criminal offence, particularly for repeat offenders.

Although the council and local residents try their best, more needs to be done. I am very understanding of the difficulty of change during a pandemic where everything is harder to action. But no harm comes from raising awareness and discussing plans now.

Why does one road matter when litter is a problem everywhere? Because every area, every woodland, every tree counts. We have the power to be a drop in the ocean to help the planet where we can.

Thank you for reading and supporting this petition, it means a lot.

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Signatures: 206Next Goal: 500
Support now