Saturday, July 21, 2012

Keeping-up Appearances

The Sun's out but Westgate's Station Road looks like a rubbish tip in places and I'm fuming!

Why the mess, because once again it appears that anti-social residents living between Adrian and Ethelbert Squares, are simply dumping their food waste in black bags outside the shops and the hungry seagulls are on these in minutes.

I've had a word with the street cleaning team, who compared the mess with Cliftonville and my thanks to those traders who have valiantly cleared the alleyway that runs behind the shops.

I'll not mince my words here and if people are 'shocked', then so be it. Parts of Westgate are experiencing a level of displacement and migration that we have seen elsewhere in Margate and Cliftonville. Many of the the larger, late Victorian houses in the squares have been turned into cheaper rental accommodation with the landlords, many of whom, I'm sure, don't even live on the island, floating profitably on the generosity of our benefits system.

Like those well-know hot-spots in Margate that suffer from a litter problem, a number of our newer residents, who may come from as far away as London or distant countries in Europe or even the Sub-Sahara, have no immediate sense of the community spirit that exists in Westgate. As a consequence, the council is having to put more resources into keeping the community squares and gardens clean and tidy. Unfortunately, the end result, is that this minority, see that their broken black bags are picked-up and so they simply do it again and again.

Dumping household rubbish in the streets and problems of anti-social behaviour among the young, - Londis in Lymington Road hits windows broken last week - are a first symptom of decline in any area and I have every intention of using any instrument I can to resist what I see is happening around me in my town. That's not a lot of course because seaside towns are invariably the victims of someone else's problems but I'm determined not to give-up without a struggle.

Yesterday, Cllr King called me and told me that the War Memorial in St Mildred's Road, now appears to be a magnet for late evening anti-social behaviour and that's another problem to try and deal with.

On a lighter note walking through the town today, I hear that local Westgate-based talent with entrepreneurial spirit in the adult services, industry,  described last week, is even larger than I thought. Apparently these two new examples involve premium phone lines at £1.75 a minute and yet another familiar face in the town. As one trader commented. "Nice money if you can make it."


Anonymous said...

Iheartily agree with you Simon as an ageing resident I could cry to see our towns dragged down by this imported dross.I have said before the answer to the ripped bags is to to redesign the bay with a fine net membrane set into the plastic this would stop the inevitable splits that are caused by gulls and rough handelling may cost more but it would save on street cleaning.

Anonymous said...

I was out in on Station Rd this morning and witnessed this for myself. I tried contacting the illustrious Ms Hibbert but she has no e-mail address listed on the TDC website and in any case, doesn't even live in Westgate...

Last night I saw a group of youths walking along Station Road. One of them was just finishing a bar of chocolate and dropped the wrapper on the ground - a tall lad with shoulder length blond hair and a grey knitted hat which seems permanently attached to his head. 'The Prat in the Hat'! I see and hear this vile youth around Westgate regularly and have nothing good to say about him and his ilk who have no resepct for Westgate.

My point is that there are plenty of 'home-grown' characters who cause litter and anti-social behaviour as well as people from 'London or distant countries' as you put it.

It's such a shame that there are litter and youth problems in Westgate at a time when pretty much all the shops are occupied and there is often a lovely atmosphere when shopping on Station Rd and St Mildred's Rd.

simon moores said...

The lad in the grey woolly hat was outside the station earlier. I take your point about local litter louts but it's the one's who dump full black bags of food waste, leaking on to our streets that anger me most.

Michael Child said...

Simon this is a problem which to a lesser or greater extent has reoccurred in the part of Ramsgate where I live and trade, we had a particularly virulent infestation about 25 years ago under the name “care in the community”. In the longer term the people which are moved by what I see as form of social engineering by different aspects of UK government, tend to drift back to where they came from.

This is even more difficult from my point of view as the displaced people hang about in the area and put off some of my customers from visiting my shop.

I think the rubbish situation could be easily mitigated by the council putting commercial size wheelie bins in the main places that the piles of rubbish sacks accumulate, they do this in Ramsgate Harbour and it works very well.

What I would like to see is increased social services, police and advice centres in particular, to help normalise the behaviour of these displaced people, most of whom don’t seem to be deliberately dysfunctional and frankly this should be funded by the areas who have sent their problem people to us.

Anonymous said...

"Pornographers welcome to Westgate-on-Sea, just make sure you look after the environment"... Simon, you're starting to sound like Ian Driver!

Readit said...

The culprits are always the same people. In our street we now have seagull proof bags but there are one or two houses which have either lost them or are too lazy to use them. It spoils the street for everyone else.

The solution is to photo the mess and fine persistent culprits. Also the refuse cart could carry a broom and shovel.

I spoke to our local street cleaner about it, he showed me his rota and is scheduled to clean on Friday. The bins are collected on Tuesday. Not much coordination there.

simon moores said...

Who said it was pornography?

1 o'clock Rob said...

Hopefully when people are cleaning up the mess they are also on the look out for addressed envelopes so that someone in authority may be able to take some action.

Anonymous said...

It does not help when we have a council policy on waste collection that means the bin men are not allowed to take away rubbish that is not inside the wheelie bin.
It's like a scene from a bad comedy, sorry mate but that black sack is not in the bin therefore i cannot put it in the refuse lorry. Absolutely PATHETIC !! is it any wonder it all ends up on the streets.