30 tonnes of waste costing the taxpayer £31,000 has been removed from the side of the A500 in North Staffordshire.
Newcastle Borough Council's 20-strong Streetscene team have spent the past fortnight cleaning up a stretch of the D-Road from the Porthill roundabout to junction 16 of the M6.
Items found include:
Bottles of urine;
Cans, bottles, food wrappers, pieces of plastic, crisp packets, fast food cartons;
Dead animals, particularly foxes and badgers;
Tyres that have been shredded or replaced;
Large pieces of wood and boarding including from skips;
Mattresses and pillows.
The D-road is maintained by Highways England but keeping it clean is a district council function.
The council also maintain the slip roads off the A500 but not the central reservations.
Operatives work on this operation between 9.30am and 3pm on weekdays, depending on the weather, as the road is quieter then. They spend the rest of their shift on other duties across the borough.
Councillor Trevor Johnson, cabinet member for environment and recycling, said: “Our experienced and multi-skilled Streetscene operatives carry out a wide range of daily tasks to keep streets, parks and open spaces in Newcastle-under-Lyme clean, green and sustainable.
“However, for the past two weeks, up to 20 operatives per day – just under half of the team – have been focusing on clearing litter alongside a 10-mile return stretch of the A500 (where accessible due to roadworks) covering from Porthill roundabout up to the roundabout at Junction 16.
“This is a major council operation that costs around £31,000 and is unfortunately an annual requirement due to the high volume of rubbish and debris on grass verges originating from vehicles using this busy route. Operatives collect approximately 30 tonnes of rubbish – in a very safe and controlled manner – including urine stored in plastic bottles which is absolutely disgusting.
“The council is continuing to face challenging financial pressures and this is a considerable amount of resource which could be spent in better ways.”