Recycle for Lewisham

A blog written for residents of Lewisham

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Lots of activity in Lewisham for the national community clear up event

All across the UK, people were reaching for their brooms, litter pickers, black sacks and gloves. Yes, it was the 21st March 2015 and that heralded this years national community clear up event. The activity was no less frenetic right here in Lewisham as community groups up and down the borough came out on what was a windy, cold pre-spring day.

Cllr Rachel Onikosi and Heidi Alexander MP get ready for some litter picking

Cllr Rachel Onikosi and Heidi Alexander MP get ready for some litter picking

On Blackheath, our very own Green Scene Team organised a litter pick and general all round clean up of the common and invited as many volunteers as wanted to come along and brave the cooler climate on the exposed heath. Along with the many enthusiastic volunteers, Heidi Alexander MP and Cllr Rachel Onikosi grabbed bags and litter pickers to support the event by getting stuck into some cleaning up.

Meanwhile in the centre of Lewisham, Cllr Stella Jeffrey helped to tidy up a very litter strewn flower bed that people seem to have been using as a litter bin for the past few months. All manner of detritus had been thrown in there including a microwave oven!

Central Lewisham get a spring clean complete with microwave oven

Central Lewisham gets a spring clean complete with microwave oven

In the southern regions of the borough, volunteers got to work in Chinbrook Meadows and amassed quite a few bags of rubbish including a few interesting finds such as old boots, scooters and paint pots.

Boots, scooters and old pots of paint, Chinbrook Meadows has them all

Boots, scooters and old pots of paint, Chinbrook Meadows has them all

Not to be outdone by the adults, school children that were part of our Clean and Green programme were also asked to get involved with some litter picking outside of their schools. Up in the Lee area, St Winifreds primary school children were seen outside the school gates picking up and recycling street litter. Not to be outdone, another primary school, Grinling Gibbons in Deptford also rolled up their sleeves and made the area outside their school clean and tidy.

Children at Grinling Gibbons keeping the streets of Deptford

Children at Grinling Gibbons keeping the streets of Deptford clean

St Winifreds school made sure the outside of their school was spotless

St Winifreds school made sure the street outside was spotless

All in all, lots of great work done by lots of volunteers to ensure our borough remains free of litter and will continue to do so. A big thank to everyone that took their time to make a small difference to their part of the borough.

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Can you help to clean up Britain?

Litter free streets is something we all want but are we prepared to do something about it? Would you write a letter to a fast food company whose litter gets blown up and down the high street? Would you use your mobile to send in reports of dumped waste? Would you take the time to pick the litter up yourself or join a litter pick group?
Clean up Britain is hoping to start a ‘people’s revolution’ to create a litter free movement in Britain and you get onboard today by making a pledge.  Please visit to sign up and find out more!  First News article

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No butts, stub it, bin it

The Council have been embarking on a campaign recently to tackle the issue of cigarette litter. Dropping cigarette litter is a crime (Environment Protection Act 1990 and Cleaner Neighbourhood & Environment Act 2005)

 Cigarette litter is the most common littered item in England and affects 78% of our streets. As part of the campaign in Lewisham, we are asking people that smoke to help by:

  • Using an ashtray, pocket ashtray or rubbish receptacle.
  • Not throwing butts out of car windows or onto pavements – they are a fire & health hazard.
  • Extinguishing your cigarette before throwing them into the rubbish receptacle.
  • Taking responsibility for your butts. Failure to do so could lead to an on the spot fine of £75 and if unpaid, a magistrates court can impose a fine of up to £2,500.

Portable ashtrays are available from the Council

Also, use a portable ash tray. These are available either during the Smoke free campaign events or you can contact: or 0208 3142068

 During January, February and March, 2012, Lewisham Council is working with Lewisham Public Health to spread the message about cigarette litter and to encourage smoking cessation. Officers will be on hand at various locations around the borough to give advice and hand out portable ashtrays. So far we have handed out 170 since the campaign started on 13 January. 

 The smoke free events will be at the following locations during January, February & March.

 January 2012

Lewisham Market, Fridays 13th and 27th

Catford Centre (Rushey Green) Thursday 19th

Deptford Market (GriffinSQ) Friday 20th   

February 2012

Lewisham Market Fridays 10th and 24th

Catford Centre (Rushey Green) Monday 27th

Deptford Market Friday 3rd

March 2012

Lewisham Market Fridays 9th, and 16th

Lewisham Market Wednesday 14th (No Smoking Day)

Catford Centre Thursday 8th

Deptford Market (GriffinSQ) Wednesday 7th

 Remember, No butts, stub it, bin it. Bin your butt or risk a £75 fine


Bag that Poo … any bin will do!

Dog fouling is a major issue for many of our towns and cities. It is not only unpleasant but can pose a health threat. Some dog owners still fail to clean up after their dogs and the highest level of dog fouling can be found in areas where people actually live.


In Lewisham we want to make it as easy as possible for dog owners to dispose of their pets poo. This means that residents can now dispose of their Dog Poo in any litter bins in the borough, including those in parks – just make sure it’s bagged before it goes in!

This does not mean that we’ll be removing existing Dog Poo bins, the only reason these bins would be removed is if they become damaged or fall into a state of disrepair. 

It is the responsibility of the dog owner or the person in charge of the dog to clear up any dog fouling left by their dog. If this does not happen a Fixed Penalty Notice can be issued, or if the case goes to court a fine of up to £1000.00.


So please “Bag that poo, any bin will do!”


If you do see any Dog Poo, you can report it using love clean streets

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Food on the go Litter

Nobody likes seeing litter on the streets of Lewisham (or any streets for that matter!), it can be bad for business and tourism, dangerous to children and animals, attracts rodents and encourages further anti-social behaviour. In Lewisham, we have collected 193 tonnes of food on the go related litter, that was not properly disposed of!

Last week we launched our “Food on the Go” campaign, this is an ongoing effort on the part of Lewisham Council and Keep Britain Tidy to reduce the amount of food and drinks related litter found on Lewisham’s streets as well as encouraging the correct disposal of litter from food on the go. This includes not only fast food packaging but drinks cartons and bottles, confectionary and sandwich packaging. The campaign ran from 15th November until 28th November .

The campaign involved working with local businesses and schools to help get the message about the responsible disposal of litter. It is a mixture of enforcement and education as the message is that there is a fixed penalty fine of £75, or failure to pay the fine within 14 days can lead to prosecution or a fine of up to £2500.

During the campaign period, The Natural Theatre Company were employed to engage the public in an interactive way to help spread the message. Council Officers were on hand to distribute ‘Wrap its’ – a folded cardboard pack including recycled paper for people to responsibly dispose of gum responsibly. We hope the campaign will be succesful in reducing the amount of litter on Lewishams Streets – if you want any more info, please email

If you do see any large amounts of littering on the streets of Lewisham or throughout London you can report it using Love Clean Streets (recently mentioned by Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer speaking about Cloud Computing at the Government Leaders Forum in London)