The cleanliness of the city’s roads has been acknowledged by central government, following an independent assessment of roadside litter levels in areas maintained by local authorities and Highways England.

The assessment was carried out by UK-based environmental charity, Keep Britain Tidy, on behalf of DEFRA, whose analysis congratulated Sheffield City Council for maintaining a consistently high standard of roadside cleanliness.

In a letter addressed to Chief Executive, John Mothersole, the council was also asked to provide the government with examples of good practice and details of the approach undertaken to achieve this standard of cleanliness across the city’s road network.

As part of the £2bn Streets Ahead Highways Maintenance contract in Sheffield, Amey are responsible for improving and maintaining the city’s infrastructure until 2037.

As well as the resurfacing of roads and pavements, the programme includes litter clearance across the highway network and surrounding street scene.

Routine street cleaning is undertaken by Amey on a continuous basis to help keep the city as litter- free as possible.

In addition, Amey works proactively with local schools across the city to deliver their Education Programme, which includes litter awareness. Since the start of the programme, Amey has visited 264 schools covering over 57,000 pupils to promote behaviour change when it comes to littering.

Cabinet member for Environment, Street Scene and Climate Change at Sheffield City Council, Councillor Mark Jones said:

“If I asked many of my constituents, if they thought our streets were clean, I’m sure I would get a very mixed bag of responses!

“However, it is really encouraging that Sheffield is being recognised for trying to deliver a good standard of cleanliness when it comes to roadside litter.

“There’s always more that can be done to combat litter and we all have a responsibility for disposing of it properly. But, this recognition from government shows that most Sheffielders are rightly proud of where they live. It also shows that we are better than other cities and it encourages us at the council to try even harder to keep Sheffield moving in the right direction; delivering the best services we can for those who live and work in our city.

“As part of the Streets Ahead contract, Amey carry out a non-stop programme of litter clearance across the entire network. People do recognise these efforts but there are still frustrations about the fact that litter reappears far too quickly. We do work hard to try and keep our pavements and roadsides clean.

“As well as the contractual requirements carried out by Amey, there are many local voluntary groups across the city that continue to dedicate their own time to cleaning up local communities, including roadside verges. We have to thank many of our community-spirited citizens for their dedication and commitment to their local environment.”

Darren Butt, Account Director at Amey Streets Ahead says,

“This recognition from DEFRA is testament to the hard work that our teams carry out daily to help keep the city’s roads clean and litter-free.

“We ask that everyone plays their part by taking their litter home with them. Litter is a blight on our environment, and we all have a responsibility to dispose of it responsibly.”

Combatting litter remains a top priority for the council and since January 2019, the council has issued 1,469 Fixed Penalty Notices (FPN’s) to tackle the minority of people who continue to drop litter.

To find out more about the council’s approach to tackling litter visit: www.sheffield.gov.uk/cleansheffield

Photo credit: Lewis Clarke