Ten years ago today I created the 74th post for Greenford 365. To mark the blog’s anniversary I will attempt to post a photo every day throughout 2022.
A sign of the times, work that was once carried out by the council is now done by volunteers, in this case the removal of the astonishing amount of litter left along the side of a road through Grove Farm. The problem isn’t just the litter, mostly drinks containers, it’s the presence and behaviour of those who consume alcohol purchased locally. By 2019 parents taking their children to a nursery on this road were concerned for their safety. In February of that year I shared photos and videos showing the state of drinking dens that were just out of sight. I almost slipped on the cans, layers deep where they had been thrown to one side by drinkers. Councillors paid attention. The vast quantity of litter was removed and the spaces fenced off. Unfortunately, while a worthy effort on the part of the LAGERCan volunteers who fill bags with litter for collection by Ealing Council, this is also a sign of failure by the authorities. In theory a Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO) gives the police and council powers to confiscate alcohol being consumed publicly in these spaces and move on or fine those consuming it. In reality there is not enough manpower to enforce it. Any credit for the improvement in what these spaces look like now belongs to those clearing it, a thankless task because no sooner are the cans removed than they begin to reappear. It has not led to any improvement in behaviour.
The latest elections will take place in May and voters might be considering what they are paying for when they’ve ended up doing the work themselves. This is one of the videos that revealed the true state of Grove Farm Park. Sound on for the noise made when you walk across lots of beer cans.
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