A Canadian gal living in Britain with 3 men and a dog. Wine helps.

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Friday, April 19, 2013

Soon to be Undercover

Andy and I choose to live in a village just outside of our local town of Grimsby, North East Lincolnshire for a number of reasons.  The predominate one being that our village is much prettier and less crowded than the town. 

In England residents have to pay a local council tax. The fee is determined by the area you live in and how many people reside in your home.  The purpose of the council tax is to pay for various amenities such as garbage collection, road maintenance etc.  Because we live in the area we do, our council tax is higher than what we would pay if we lived in a less desirable area. When you are paying taxes at these rates it's only logical to expect that the services you pay for are carried out.  Or maybe we're just unreasonable people. 

I understand that since I moved to this country over nine years ago there has been an increase in population and therefore traffic.  We've seen an increase in bad weather each winter which is now resulting in our council having to fork out extra cash to clear the roads as well as fix the numerous potholes that result from the inclement bad weather. (When I first moved here I was astounded at how fresh and smooth the roads looked.) 

Over a year ago our council paid to have what used to be just plain dirt jumps converted into a proper set of bike ramps: 

The kids absolutely love it. 

There is a beautiful big field that leads directly off the jumps.  It's practically outside our front door and on days it's not used for a football pitch, its perfect for exercising Molly on.  

(This is only a small corner near the jumps and path)

Loads of families use it.  Every spring when the days get longer and warmer the community comes out in full force and it's great to see.  

The only trouble is, over the past few years and definitely since the instalment of the bike ramps the amount of rubbish has increased.  Sure there are two rubbish bins near the ramps but they are either full to overflowing, or people just blatantly disregard them. (I won't even touch on the amount of cars that park illegally  and block our drive- that's an entirely separate issue to bore you with.)

Around the corner from the ramps is a bike path that has a high volume of foot/cycle traffic as well.  For years Andy has been petitioning the local council to place a few bins down the pathway but has only met with refusal because it would mean the council would have to pay someone to actually go down the path to empty the bins, rather than those just those placed at each end.  I'm not sure how beneficial it would be anyway as the bins provided aren't always used. Yet it would be a start.

Because this is the lovely view we are met with every time we go out for a walk:

(This is only one small area)

It's disgusting.  I can't believe that people take no pride in their community and just fling their garbage wherever they feel like it.  It's bad enough when people won't use the allocated bins for dog waste, but what's the point of bagging it up if you are only going to fling it in the trees?

We live in a lovely area yet you would never know it from the amount of trash that is strewn all over the communal areas.  The council will send someone out to clear the rubbish that is directly on the path or field but say they can't allow anyone to venture more than a few feet off the path to do the undergrowth etc due to Healthy and Safety regulations. Last year someone actually came out to view the situation and her opinion was 'It's not that bad'.  Maybe not, if you live in a trash can with a green muppet called Oscar.   

Our only consolation is that in a few weeks the foilage will have come out in all it's splendid greenery and for the most part will hide this disgrace under it's cover like it does every year.


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