Council ‘messed up on holiday weekend litter bins’

An overflowing bin on the promenade at Portobello. Picture: contributed
An overflowing bin on the promenade at Portobello. Picture: contributed
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SUN-BATHING hotspots have been marred with overflowing litter bins over the Easter holiday weekend sparking claims the city is being “let down” by poor waste management.

Rubbish piled up at bins along Portobello Promenade, Holyrood Park and stretches of the Meadows as sun-worshippers took advantage of the fine weather and public holidays.

Despite litter bins being “emptied as often as possible” by the council, angry residents chronicled severe cases of neglect at Capital beauty spots by posting junk-strewn images on social media.

Today, shadow environment leader Joanna Mowat branded the episodes a “disgrace” and said she was tired of repeated failures to increase collections during sunny spells.

She said: “People complain because they are really proud of the city and the council is really letting them down if we don’t get this right.

“We were aware of this problem when good weather was forecast the middle of last week so I don’t know why we were taken by surprise by this.

“It’s disappointing to see this hasn’t been put right yet. We all know litter is the number one issue for people and it really upsets them when we don’t get it right.”

The Conservative councillor added: “It’s about where you direct resources and what you are going to prioritise that weekend – it is a management issue. We look at the weather to resource for icy roads why can’t we do the same for sun. It’s a disgrace.”

One Portobello resident, who snapped images of scattered rubbish around the Holyrood Park bins on Easter Monday, said it was a “sad indictment”.

Colin Cornwall, 58, said he even spotted tourists taking snaps of the shameful build-up.

He said: “It looks like we don’t care or respect our own backyard. I find it incredible the council would see fit not to deal with this when they know the place will be full of tourists.

“It really is ridiculous. You would never see this on holiday in France, Italy, Spain or ­Scandinavia. There were lots of tourists around and even a Japanese man taking a photograph of the mess.”

Green councillor Chas Booth said overflowing bins were for many “a very visible sign of council neglect and poor ­service”.

He said: “The council could be running the best back-office systems in the world, but if the bins are not getting emptied then that’s what people will judge the council on.

“It should be no surprise that demand rises on a sunny holiday weekend so I would have expected services to be well on top of it.”

Defending the service, environment leader Councillor Lesley Hinds said people had obviously been taking advantage of the “glorious weather” and were “enjoying everything the city has to offer”.

She said: “The litter bins are emptied as often as possible and I would urge people to look after the environment by taking their litter away with them or to another bin rather than throw it on the ground near a full one.”