Nostalgia: Down in the dumps over rubbish

Rubbish piles up on Leith Walk in 1987

Rubbish piles up on Leith Walk in 1987

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IT’S been rubbish times for many Capital residents facing bin bag build-ups after collections became fortnightly.

During the week, it emerged that around 7500 bins across the city – one in ten – were not picked up on time, with bin men also claiming black bags left out by householders were too dangerous to pick up.

Rubbish piles up on Leith Walk in 1987

Rubbish piles up on Leith Walk in 1987

Children had no problem going near the cans, however, in 1954, when a line of them left outside Wester Hailes nursery school, which had been closed by the public health department, was used as a prop in their play.

A dustmen strike in 1978 led to fed-up residents dumping their rubbish at the Craigentinny refuse depot. The walkout was a week old when city leaders began handing out plastic bags to thousands of shoppers to collect their rubbish – even though they admitted the waste would not be collected.

The cause of Johnstone 
Terrace being left strewn with litter was debated in the Evening News in February 1964. The mystery was either down to “litter louts” or “Edinburgh’s east wind having a February fling”.

We reported that no-one in the vicinity was able to account for the wrapping paper’s mysterious appearance, while police said they hadn’t received a report of any 
incident.

Teenagers help clean up the Water of Leith in 1983

Teenagers help clean up the Water of Leith in 1983

And when the professionals found the going too tough, Operation Riverbank in 1983 showed that eager youngsters were willing to get their hands dirty as teenagers helped clear abandoned tyres and other rubbish from the Water of Leith.

In total, around 100 people gathered to tackle a ten-mile stretch from Balerno to Bonnington to offer a contribution to Beautiful Britain Year after responding to a call for volunteers from the Water of Leith Walkway Trust.

Children playing at the bins at Wester Hailes nursery school in 1954

Children playing at the bins at Wester Hailes nursery school in 1954

People dump their rubbish outside Craigentinny refuse depot during the dustmen's strike in 1978

People dump their rubbish outside Craigentinny refuse depot during the dustmen's strike in 1978