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  3. Litter, street cleaning and dog fouling

Litter, street cleaning and dog fouling

We spend around £650,000 each year cleaning streets and paths, which includes emptying bins and picking up litter. Compared to other districts, West Oxfordshire has low levels of litter and standards are higher than the national average.

Litter

We are getting lots of reports of overflowing bins due to an increase in dog walkers because of Coronavirus. If you see an overflowing bin please take your rubbish and dog waste home with you if possible.

There are about 750 litter bins located around West Oxfordshire. They are emptied at a variety of times depending on how heavily they are used.

Report an overflowing bin

We remove litter and fly-tipping from public land, including, streets, roadside verges and parks. We support groups carrying out litter picks in their own communities and have produced a litter information pack outlining ways we can help.

We will provide interested volunteer groups with:

  • Litter grabbers
  • Safety equipment such as gloves and hi visibility tabards
  • Refuse bags (and we can collect any bagged up litter after the clean up event)
  • Any necessary training
  • Advice and assistance for issues such as graffiti removal, fly-tipping and other similar concerns

To register for a litter picking project, complete our general enquiry form.

Fly-posting

Fly-posting is the unlawful display of advertisements (usually for events or businesses) pasted, attached or painted on to buildings, street furniture or other structures (including trees and the surface of the road or pavement) without the consent of the owner or the necessary permission.

Report fly-posting

It is a problem because:

  • It can be unsightly and is a defacement of the property on which it is placed
  • In some locations it could be a distraction to motorists
  • It may obliterate or obscure legitimate signage, such as road signs

The law says:

  • The application of posters, notices and stickers should be restricted to legal advertising sites which are authorised notice boards
  • Persistent offenders can be issued with Fixed Penalty Notices or prosecuted

Charity events can advertise under certain conditions. For more information call 01993 861000.

The council also has a protocol on the siting of A-boards:

Dog fouling

Dog fouling is when a person permits a dog in their charge to foul in a public place and fails to clean it away immediately after.

A public place means land to which the public has access within built up areas of the district, such as roads, gutters, footpaths, verges, pedestrian areas, parks, school playing fields, sports grounds, and cemeteries.

Report dog fouling

Ideally, dogs should be trained from an early age to go at home in their own garden before or after a walk, rather than during.

If dog fouling does occur away from home it can be quickly and easily removed using any suitable plastic bag without your hands coming into contact with the faeces. Simply place your hand inside the bag, pick up the faeces, and then pull the bag down around your hand, effectively turning it inside out, and resulting in the waste now being contained within. Tie a knot in the bag and place it in a dog waste bin or take it home for disposal. If this is not possible, as a last resort double-wrap in two plastic bags and dispose of in a litter bin.

  • There are more than 500 dog waste bins installed throughout the district
  • Aluminium dog fouling warning signs and self-adhesive stickers are also available

It is a problem because:

  • Dog faeces carry many germs that can cause illness and in extreme cases could result in blindness
  • It is both offensive to smell and to look at, and is extremely unpleasant to step in

Abandoned shopping trolleys

If you see a shopping trolley abandoned in the district, please report it ot the store or supermarket it came from.

If you see an abandoned shopping trolley or other possible obstruction in a watercourse which may lead to flooding, please call the Environment Agency on 03708 506 506.

Street cleaning

Here are some frequently asked questions about street cleaning:

Street cleaning FAQs

Who maintains the roads and pavements?

Potholes, broken street lighting, faulty traffic lights and loose paving can be reported and viewed a directly and quickly to Oxfordshire County Council, the highways authority for the area the Fix My Street website.

Weeds on pavements are the responsibility of Oxfordshire County Council.

Who cleans the roads and pavements?

We clean roads, pavements and council-owned land regularly.

We are not responsible for street cleaning on private or unadopted roads, town or parish council land or road verges outside the 30mph zone.

How regularly do the road and paths get swept?

We set our mechanical sweeping and manual litter picking schedules based on local knowledge of the area, with the busiest areas being cleaned more frequently.

What happens if leaves or litter block public drains?

If you notice a public drain is blocked by leaves, please report it to Oxfordshire County Council for drain clearing and Thames Water.

Is the district council responsible for other areas such as car parks, cycle paths, green spaces and play areas?

This is the landowner’s responsibility. However, if you have a query about a particular area, you can contact us and we can look up who this is for you.

Who cuts the grass and when?

Landowners should maintain their own grass areas. We are only responsible for cutting grass areas we own or those areas contracted to us for regular maintenance. We cut the grass on district land 10 times a year. This is usually once every two weeks through the growing season (April to November). Grass clippings are left to naturally break down on the surface of the grass areas. Grass verges outside the 30mph zone are looked after by Oxfordshire County Council who are the highways authority for the area.

Who cuts the hedges and maintains shrub beds?

We cut over 30,000 metres of hedge every year in council car parks, on open spaces or housing owned by the council and along some highways. The hedges are cut twice a year. Hedges on private property should be cut and maintained by the owner or occupier of the property.

Dead animals

We collect dead domestic and wild animals that have been involved in road traffic accidents on the highway usually within 24 hours of it being reported. If domestic animals have been micro-chipped we will endeavour to make contact with the owners.