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  • Southside

Council urges locals to pick up their own rubbish

Wednesday, 29th August, 2018 8:00am
Council urges locals to pick up their own rubbish

Some of the mess pictured in the green space.

Council urges locals to pick up their own rubbish

Some of the mess pictured in the green space.

DÚN Laoghaire Rathdown Council's Parks Service has said it is “not unreasonable” for locals to pick up after themselves when visiting some of the county’s lesser known parks and green spaces.

The council said that with in excess of 1,200 smaller parks and open spaces located throughout the local authority’s administrative area, it would expect visitors, who are generally from the locality, to remove and dispose of litter responsibly when visiting or passing through these public areas.

The issue arose after one local, who preferred not to be named, sent pictures to Southside People illustrating the problems of illegal dumping, littering and even a homeless person’s tent located in a green space that he described as a “small, no-named park located between Churchtown Road Upper and Finsbury Park”, near Dundrum.

The local man said this green area was “a busy patch, providing one of the very few green areas in a neighbourhood of many retirees and dog owners”.

It's also a much-used pedestrian route from Dundrum to Nutgrove, he said.

“In recent times the park has been routinely scattered with litter of all sorts including household, plastics, beer bottles, old clothing etc and even a dead rat on occasion.

“Presumably this is domestic waste dragged around by foxes but it is also blown in from elsewhere. The amount of dog fouling is worrying, considering that children play football on the grass almost every day.

“It's also a dirty hazard for wheelchair users who dare not stray off the single narrow pathway. Of course, many dog owners do bag their dog's waste but some throw it behind bushes and trees.

“More recently I noticed a particularly messy corner of the park where a path of litter led me to find a tent behind bushes where somebody is currently living. This dwelling remained there for a few days before being cleared up which would indicate just how infrequently anyone from the council inspects or visits the park.

“For these reasons, it is all the more bizarre that Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council refuses to place any kind of rubbish bin in this park. Considering there is a bin located around the corner in front of the Carnegie Library, Dundrum this is hard to accept. The problem is this bin is not visible at all to park users - there really should be one in the park, preferably with extra bags and refuse pick-up sticks provided so conscientious locals might pick up rubbish while their dogs run around.”

The man pointed out that this is provided nearby where the Dodder Walk meets Clonskeagh Road.

“The council has provided dog waste collection bins in other areas under its control, so why not one particularly popular with retirees and dog owners?” he added.

“For a relatively small price this park could be redesigned to have a half-kilometre walkway around its perimeter so that young families might stroll this route with babies and toddlers by day, and joggers could lap the park. This greater dispersal of human traffic would deter dumping behind the perimeter bushes and youths from vandalising trees. But if nothing else, at least provide a bin.”

A spokesperson from the council’s parks department said they only provide litter bins within their flagship parks and major parks where a staff presence can service them.

“The council has in excess of 1,200 smaller parks and open spaces through the local authority area,” the spokesperson said. “Accordingly, it is not unreasonable to expect visitors, who are generally from the locality, to remove and dispose of litter responsibly when visiting or passing through these public areas.

“Where issues of dog fouling are identified or referred to the council, arrangements are made to erect dog fouling signs as a reminder to the public of their duty as dog owners to clean up after their pets,” the spokesperson added. “Unfortunately, this park is narrow in nature and its sloping topography is not conducive to providing a perimeter path system.”

According to the council’s spokesperson, foot path repairs, tree planting and seats are planned for this park in the coming months.

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