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Thursday, 21 August 2014

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Historic Carlisle street blighted by rubbish

A missed binbag collection is being blamed for leaving one of Carlisle’s most historic streets strewn with rubbish.

Carlisle rubbish photo
Rubbish was left uncollected on Abbey Street, Carlisle

Bin men were due to call at Abbey Street last Wednesday, a day later than usual because of the Diamond Jubilee bank holiday.

Residents are adamant the refuse lorry never came, although the city council says it did.

Whatever the truth, plastic binbags filled with rotting food and other waste have been left on the pavement to be torn open by dogs and scavenging seagulls.

Worshippers at Carlisle Cathedral and tourists heading for Tullie House had to negotiate the mess while wind blew rubbish from the leaking bags along the street.

One passing couple we spoke to thought the bin crews must be on strike.

Another visitor, Billy Mac from Consett in County Durham, said: “We come to Carlisle every year and it’s normally very prim and proper. It’s astonishing to see it like this. It’s not like Carlisle.”

Abbey Street resident Roger Jones said: “We haven’t had a collection since before the bank holiday.

“They are usually very good and it’s exceptional that it has been so long.

“I’ve had some friends down from Scotland and they were joking about it, saying what a rough area this is.”

Another resident, Professor Richard West, lodged a complaint with the city council.

He said: “It should have been collected last Wednesday.

“It wasn’t. We’ve had no information and the rubbish has been sitting festering.”

Andy Twigg, who runs Twigg Shoe Services, said: “This is the historical quarter of Carlisle. We are trying to make it look nice for visitors and all they see is binbags.”

The episode is an embarrassment for the city council’s new Labour administration, which fought the recent election campaign on a pledge to “clean up Carlisle”.

The council provides most homes with wheeled bins for household rubbish.

However, it continues to use refuse sacks in Abbey Street because there is no rear access to properties.

The council denies that its bin crews missed last week’s collection.

A spokeswoman told the News & Star: “The refuse collection for Abbey Street took place on the morning of Wednesday June 6, following the bank holiday, but there was very little waste put out for collection.”

The rubbish had been collected by 9am today.

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