Street cleaners are to be issued with state of the art equipment to better cope with picking up litter including wet leaves! After years of under investment street cleaners will be armed with electric hoovers after residents reported they struggled with dated equipment on their carts including poorly performing brooms which were not able to cope with the influx of wet leaves on pavements before Christmas.

The council is also working with behavioural experts in a bid to devise ways of getting residents to increase recycling and reduce waste levels. At the same time the council will be investing in four new street-cleaning machines which will hit the pavements later this month.

Thornton Heath ‘has been and continues to be a priority area’, said Cllr Stuart Collins Cabinet Member for Clean Green Croydon, who confirmed that several streets dogged by fly tipping are already under covert surveillance in Thornton Heath. Streets like Hythe Path and the corner of Buller Road which are regular dumping spots for dirty nappies and other unsavoury items including before Christmas these raw meat bones.

So far the council has issued 1,700 fixed-penalty notices, more than 50 per cent of which were for fly-tipping; prosecuted 149 people for enviro-crimes, and confiscated and crushed 19 vehicles involved in waste crimes in Croydon. Under the plans unveiled in a cabinet report there will be ttwo additional refuse collection trucks and three 3.5 tonne cage tippers to clean hard-to-reach areas such as housing sites, narrow alleyways and fly-tips. In addition there will be 50 more solar-powered bins installed to keep busy areas in district centres, such as entrances to stations and parks, tidy.

The subscription based garden waste collection will extend all year round there are plans to set up a paper only recycling bin which is in the SLWP contract to start next year. Over the next few months, Don’t Mess With Croydon will enter its second phase, with a strong focus on the community and council’s pride in Croydon, and working together to keeping the streets clean. Thornton Heath Community Action Team has been at the forefront of the campaign to recruit Street Champions and has had success countering fly-tipping with a poster which may now be used borough-wide.