‘Crackdown in Capital will be welcomed’

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IT is as much an Edinburgh tradition as unwanted Fringe show flyers being thrust into your hand and roadworks making a drive to Fife quicker than one across the city

This is the time of year when the pavements of the southside get clogged with old television sets, broken bookcases and stained mattresses. It is the end of the academic year and time for the clearing out of student digs.

The crackdown on flytipping by the city’s environmental wardens in the area will be welcomed by residents and businesses alike.

For the rubbish piling up in the street not only spoils the look of the neighbourhood for those living there, but also creates a very poor impression of the Capital for the many tourists who will be passing through this summer.

But while £60 fines being dished out to those who are caught out offers the satisfaction of seeing some of those bad neighbours getting what they deserve, it will not stop the problem recurring next year.

On-the-spot fines, especially in the limited numbers dished out by the city council’s wardens, are only ever going to be a small part of solving the problem of littering.

Although making an example of some, and publicising their punishment to their peers, has got to be a useful first step, it is only that.

Education, ironically in the case of these university students, remains key to trying to improve good neighbourly behaviour.

Many students need reminded about the impact their behaviour can have on others.

And councillor Lesley Hinds is quite right to highlight preventative measures, such as providing skips in dumping hot spots.

A well-rounded approach combining all these measures is the only realistic hope of seeing less discarded furniture and other detritus piling up on the same streets again this time next year.

Good clean fun

wE are sometimes said to be a little reserved here in Edinburgh, a little slower to show our true colours than some of our more gallus neighbours.

So the rush among city library users to get their hands on a copy of Fifty Shades of Grey will surprise some people.

While millions of women are thought to be buying the bestseller online to save themselves the 
embarrassment of being seen in public with a book dubbed “mummy porn”, there seem to be no such hang-ups here.

The only fear seems to be that of being left at the back of the queue.