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Clean up called for in Bungay

PUBLISHED: 11:14 31 July 2009 | UPDATED: 08:23 01 August 2010

BUNGAY residents concerned about the messy state of their streets are being urged to roll up their sleeves and take matters into their own hands.

Bungay town councillor Simon Thompson, said he has been approached by numerous members of the public criticizing the town's weed and litter problem and is urging them to clean up their streets themselves.

BUNGAY residents concerned about the messy state of their streets are being urged to roll up their sleeves and take matters into their own hands.

Bungay town councillor Simon Thompson, said he has been approached by numerous members of the public criticizing the town's weed and litter problem and is urging them to clean up their streets themselves.

However Mr Thompson's call for action will not be well received by everyone, with some local naturalists complaining that clumsy efforts to pull weeds in Bungay have resulted in wildflowers being killed “illegally”.

Mr Thompson, who has organised a series of litter picking and weed-pulling expeditions over the past few weeks, said he is frustrated by people who complain about the litter and weed problem in Bungay, but do nothing about it.

“So much of the nation appears to have developed an attitude which says 'why should I do anything to help?'” he said. “I believe that Bungay has an opportunity to be better than so many other small towns that are dying because of this mind-set. I know I have been just as guilty of falling into this trap as anyone else, but it seems to me that someone has to be first in changing things for the better.”

He said that the reason for this year's overgrowth of weeds is that there was a “mix up” with the new contractors responsible for spraying the weeds, which meant that they were not sprayed at the beginning of the season.

He believed there has long been a problem with litter in Bungay but the recent weed growth has highlighted the issue.

“I know many people will remember when we had employed street cleaners specific to Bungay, keeping the town looking good,” he said. “Of course we do still have hard working street cleaners, but they are expected to cover the whole of the Waveney area and it's just a physical impossibility for them to be as effective as we would like them to be.

“I believe that a great many would very much like to see the return of the valuable service dedicated solely to Bungay, but sadly I think it's very unlikely to happen. I'd like to send out a rallying call to anyone who feels as I do, that perhaps the answer is to take matters into our own hands and to regain pride in the town we live in and call home.”

Mr Thompson's pleas have coincided with some complaints regarding the pulling of protected wildflowers in Bungay.

A Bungay couple wrote in last week complaining of wildflowers being “scraped” out of the castle footpath, and Beccles man Colin Jacobs has similarly attacked the “illegal destruction of the wildflowers of Bungay.”

“May I suggest the do-gooders concentrate on the litter, used condoms and syringe needles that proliferate the town of Bungay and leave the plants alone?” he wrote. “It is a criminal offence to uproot wild flowers from any place unless you have the owner's permission, in this case the poll tax paying public. Weeds are only plants growing in the wrong place.”

Mr Thompson strongly denied that his group of street cleaners have pulled any wildflowers, and stressed they were very careful only to pull weeds.

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