HUCKNALL and the rest of Ashfield are becoming safer, cleaner and greener — thanks to the hard work of the district council.
For it has been revealed that improvements have made a big difference to the area’s environment.
The council sets itself a series of performance benchmarks as part of a Neighbourhood Charter. This is a commitment laying down how it will tackle problems ranging from fly-tipping to graffiti and anti-social behaviour (ASB).
The latest figures show a year-on-year improvement across every statistic.
Coun Warren Nuttall (Lab), lead member for neighbourhoods and parks, said: “It is extremely pleasing that our efforts to improve the environment are delivering results.
“These excellent performance-figures are testament to the hard work of many people, both within the council and the wider community.
“We are committed to making Ashfield cleaner and greener and by working with our residents, we believe we are moving in the right direction.”
The Dispatch reported late last year on an explosion of graffiti, including a digraceful attack on Hucknall Parish Church. Since then a specific team has been established to tackle the problem.
Fewer areas in Hucknall now fall below the acceptable standard for litter with workers targeting hotspots, undertaking co-ordinated clean-ups and holding community events to promote responsible behaviour.
Across the whole district, recycling is up to a rate of 35%, thanks to an increase in subscribers to the garden-waste service, the introduction of battery and Christmas-tree recycling, more street-sweeper waste being recycled and composted, and improvements to recycling centres.
The council’s vehicles are also less polluting with the amount of carbon dioxide they produce being reduced by 7.2%. This is down to better route-planning.
Fly-tipping has been tackled with one man jailed for 28 days for emptying a skip full of waste, including asbestos, on a Hucknall car park.
Prosecutions for ‘environmental crimes’ over the last year have resulted in almost £18,500 worth of fines being dished out by the courts.
Levels of ASB and criminal damaged have also fallen by 17% and 27% respectively.