“We should be shouting about Northampton in a positive way. We have a proud history and could make the town great but we can’t even empty rubbish bins or cut grass verges”.
This is the opinion of Links View resident Andy Whiting who has worked in the town centre for 15 years and says he now wants to see “action, not excuses.”
Andy, like many residents in this town, are keeping a close eye on the new environmental services contractor, Veolia, and is fed up with overgrown grass and overflowing bins.
Pictures have been flooding into the Chron during the past week of the worst ‘grot spots’ in town.
Veolia took over the contract that covers street cleaning, cutting grass, waste collections and recycling, on Monday, June 4, and are now 11 days into their contract.
Sheila Howard, a retired teacher from Kingshorpe, said: “If I do walk through town I am still shocked at how filthy and neglected it is.
“There is nothing to attract anyone here to spend money or indeed to invest money into business. I think the state of the town has definitely reached an all time low as the neglect is no longer confined to the centre.
“It is seeping out to where I live on the outskirts eg. no grass cutting, travellers taking up residence on our parks, bins overflowing, trees hedges and shrubs completely overgrown and hiding signs, road markings disappearing, I could go on.
“It is time now to face up to the inevitable - Northampton is going to die unless money is invested in the correct way. I just hope it is not too late.”
Northampton Borough Council’s cabinet member for the environment, Councillor Mike Hallam, told critics that they should judge him and the new contractors after 90 days.
Here at the Chronicle & Echo staff are compiling a dossier of information to send to the new contractor to inform them where to clean up next.
Emma Heath, who is the face behind ‘Northampton’s Rubbish’ Twitter account, is calling on councillors and MPs to break their silence.
She said: “What is dismaying is a startling silence from MPs and councillors.
“They want to know how to improve the town but don’t really want to listen.
“NBC are responsive though and it is a huge job - the pity is that the previous contractors let it slide so far.”
Through Twitter, Emma, of the Mounts, is encouraging communities to start litter picking groups, residents’ associations and is giving a platform to locals to challenge those who dump litter.
Councillor Mike Hallam said: “We welcome and encourage members of the public submitting details of areas that need attention via our website.
“A comprehensive list of issues has already been sent to Veolia which is informing their work to improve the town over the initial few months of the contract and work on this is progressing well.”
To report fly tipping or area of littering for clearing, please visit https://mycouncil.northampton.digital/reportIt.html or email firstname.lastname@example.org