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  • Northside West

Disappointing results for local areas in latest litter league

Monday, 14th January, 2019 1:00pm

Story by Jack Gleeson
Disappointing results for local areas in latest litter league

Cllr Noeleen Reilly (IND) pictured with locals engaged in one of the many community clean-ups last year.

Disappointing results for local areas in latest litter league

Cllr Noeleen Reilly (IND) pictured with locals engaged in one of the many community clean-ups last year.

BALLYMUN and the North Inner City have once again featured at the wrong end of the annual Irish Business Against Litter (IBAL) league table.

The report for 2018 found that there was some improvement in Ballymun this time round but stated that while good sites were “very good”, poor sites were deemed “very poor.”

The North Inner City was also reported to have had a modest improvement over the last survey, but the survey found that no substantial progress has been evident in the area in recent years. 

News that Ballymun failed to improve significantly in the 2018 survey was described as “disappointing” by local councillor, Noeleen Reilly (IND).

“After reading the report I am disappointed to see Ballymun mentioned again,” she said.

“There is no doubt there is an issue with illegal dumping and we have particular black spots in the area.

Cllr Reilly was unhappy with the survey findings, claiming it ignored initiatives that locals had introduced over the past year.

“Last year seven known areas for illegal dumping were turned into pocket gardens, totally transforming those areas in an anti-dumping Initiative,” she pointed out.

“Disadvantaged communities like Ballymun are criticised in the report for not engaging in respecting their areas as well as large areas of social housing.

“I can say now more people than ever in Ballymun involved in community clean-ups and Ballymun Tidy Towns are out every week.

“IBAL fails to recognise any of this nor the areas that were transformed since the last report.

“We have no problem in Ballymun taking criticism, we are well use to it, and we will work on that but we will also stand up for ourselves as a community and acknowledge the great environmental work that has taken place last year.”

Top ranking sites in Ballymun included Poppintree Park, Ballymun Road, Ballymun Youth Project and The Rediscovery Centre, which was described as “exceptionally well presented and maintained”.

According to An Taisce, which carried out the survey, Ballymun’s result was brought down by dumping and burnt items at the former Towers and recycle facility at the Shopping Centre. 

Meanwhile, the North Inner City is rooted to the bottom of the litter table and is one of only two areas out of 40 surveyed that are described as ‘seriously littered’.

“Dunne Street, Sherrard Street Lower and Oriel Street weren’t just littered but suffered from dumping, on a large scale – piles of black sacks and plastic bags of rubbish,” the report states.

Some of the top ranking sites in the North Inner City included James Joyce Street, Marino College of Further Education and Memorial Garden, Diamond Park and Sheriff Street Park.

Conor Horgan of IBA said disadvantaged urban areas occupied the bottom five places in the rankings.

“Three years ago we deliberately shone a spotlight on specific city areas in the hope that the attention would spur councils and communities into action,” he said.

“It is fair to say we have seen no noticeable improvement in any of these areas - nor have we seen much by way of substantial measures to them turn around.

“The historic development of large areas of social housing has shaped a ‘them and us’ society and the gap is widening.

“Litter is a symptom of a greater malaise and keeping these areas as clean and well presented as the rest of a city would over time have significant benefits. We need local authorities to take a lead.”

Read the digital editions of the Dublin People Northside East, Northside West & Southside here