A Chester street has been transformed as part of a new campaign to reduce gum litter in the city centre.
The grey pavements of Foregate Street were covered with brightly coloured spots to highlight the significant amount of gum that is dropped in the city centre. CH1ChesterBID circled discarded gum using water-soluble fluorescent chalk across one of the busiest areas in Chester before Cheshire West and Chester Council’s Streetscene team removed the gum.
The local awareness campaign is being led by CH1ChesterBID and supported by Cheshire West and Chester Council is part of a UK wide initiative funded by The Chewing Gum Action Group, an organisation chaired by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra).
Nick White, CH1ChesterBID city centre manager, said: “Clean city centre streets are an incredibly important part of creating a world-class welcome and we hope this campaign will help raise awareness of the problems associated with gum and litter on our city streets.
“We want the people of Chester to feel immensely proud of where they live, which is why we have partnered with Cheshire West and Chester Council and the Chewing Gum Action Group to raise awareness and proactively tackle the issue.
Supporting the campaign, Councillor Karen Shore, Cheshire West and Chester Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment, said: “Chewing gum litter is costly and difficult to remove, therefore we hope that this campaign will encourage gum chewers to bin their gum the right way and understand that they can play a part in making Chester a more attractive place for all our visitors.
“Enforcement officers will be out during the campaign and people need to be made aware that dropping something as small as a piece of gum on the floor could result in a fixed penalty notice of £75 being issued.”
Chester is one of several cities across the UK taking part in the national Chewing Gum Action Group campaign. Other locations include Colchester, Corby, Hackney, Harrow, Hounslow, Kensington and Chelsea, Maidstone, North Ayreshire and Oldham.
Key representatives from the chewing gum industry are supporting the national campaign, along with Government representatives, environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy and the Chartered Institution of Wastes Management.
Allison Ogden-Newton, chief executive at Keep Britain Tidy, said: “Littering is often seen as someone else’s fault and everyone else’s problem. For over ten years we’ve been committed to raising awareness of littered gum and using creative ways to get people to stop and think. By partnering with local communities like Chester to get the message across, we can all work together to tackle the problem.”