Anger at ‘disgusting’ waste problem in Sunderland community

Rosalind Copeland is angry over rubbish around Southwick.
Rosalind Copeland is angry over rubbish around Southwick.
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Rising rubbish problems in a Sunderland neighbourhood have been branded “disgusting” and a “disgrace”.

Overflowing bins, dog mess and knee-high grass in recent weeks have forced Southwick residents to clean up the area themselves.

Do you live in the area, and are you affected?

Do you live in the area, and are you affected?

Last week the Echo reported on how litter and flytipped rubbish was proving a growing problem in many parts of the city.

Council chiefs have been criticised in some quarters, but insist the real culprit is the Government for slashing millions from the local authority’s budget.

Former Southwick councillor Rosalind Copeland said the situation was becoming intolerable.

She told the Echo: “The back lane behind The Green is full of rubbish.

The scene in Southwick.

The scene in Southwick.

“This is a beautiful village green and just a short walk from the Hilton Hotel, but anybody who made that walk would be disgusted at what they see. This is just unacceptable – it is disgusting. People can’t live like this.

“We have had to do a litter pick around Thompson Road ourselves.”

Carer Ann Tully, 58, who has lived with her family in Park Terrace for 26 years, said she has complained to the council several times over the issue of grass cutting, with the area outside her home allowed to grow to knee height, and overflowing dog waste bins.

She said: “I feel that Southwick, which is a run down area, is put on the back burner. It’s really not on.”

The waste problem in the area has been branded "disgusting".

The waste problem in the area has been branded "disgusting".

Patrick Ogle, 62, of Chatterton Street, also in Southwick, is also concerned.

He said: “When you walk around, it’s an absolute disgrace. The dog bins are terrible, there’s bags of mess everywhere and the smell is awful.”

Councillors in the area, Labour members Norma Wright, Kelly Chequer and Miles Elliott, led a community clear up which saw 20 bags of rubbish collected.

A petition is also being prepared by the group to send to Prime Minister Theresa May calling on action over the cuts.

Litter in the Southwick area.

Litter in the Southwick area.

Coun Elliott said: “After more than six years of Government cuts totalling hundreds of millions of pounds, front line services have been inevitably been impacted.

“We hate seeing the area so untidy and set up the campaign to do something about it – the support from residents and businesses has been absolutely phenomenal.”