Traders hit out at mess in Portsmouth shopping area

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FED-UP shop owners are demanding rubbish is cleaned up as it is giving their high street a bad name.

Traders in North End, Portsmouth, say bins are being left overfilled and food is being dumped at the back of their businesses.

Lee Pateman, owner of Goodwins Digital Photo Shop in London Road, said: ‘This problem has always irritated me.

‘I’ve talked to the council a number of times about the mess but nothing has been sorted.

‘People are being put off from walking through this way which is a real shame as many of my customers use this path to get to my shop.’

It comes after Portsmouth North MP Penny Mordaunt called for a catalogue of improvements to come to the area. She wants multi-national firms and Portsmouth City Council to fund the improvements.

According to shop owners, the problem is worse in bad weather when Domino’s Pizza staff take less care putting bags into bins. Bags placed by the side of the bins spill over and the contents blow throughout the street.

Mr Pateman said: ‘I’ve spoken to the branch manager about the issue and they have said that they will inform their staff but yet they still dump rubbish anywhere.’

The council has said that as the area behind the shops is private land, it is unable to do anything the situation.

But it says only one complaint about the rubbish has been submitted and when an officer visited the rubbish had been cleaned up.

Silbia Lesa, owner of fast food outlet Mamma Lena said: ‘It’s disgusting and unhealthy for anyone who uses the walk way frequently. We just want the problem to be sorted.’

Senior environmental enforcement officer Steward Lennard said: ‘The immediate vicinity is regularly visited by community wardens but, because the service road and yards are private land, they are not directly patrolled, although community wardens would take appropriate action if they witnessed anything unlawful that could be seen from the adopted highway area.’

The council said it is Domino’s legal duty to put in a trade waste collection service and to provide its own bins.

A manager from Domino’s North End, who refused to be named, said: ‘We haven’t had any complaints from any other traders in London Road.

‘However we have now had an extra bin given to us so we have more space to put our rubbish so it will not be blown everywhere.’

Ms Mordaunt said local government officials have visited North End and say it has ‘great potential’.

She said: ‘They made a number of practical suggestions, including relaxing charges for licences to put more things out at the front of shops, improving the look and feel of the place as well as discussing improving parking and increasing footfall.’

City MP reveals results of shopkeepers survey

Portsmouth North MP Penny Mordaunt has released the results of her traders’ survey about the future of North End.

A number of practical suggestions were identified including improving the whole look and feel of the place.

She said: ‘The traders have identified things that would make an immediate impact to them, and the council should get on with those.’

The report highlights that there should be some free parking, and a weekly market that would be held in the Co-op car park once a month. There are also calls for street warderns to tackle crime.