Litter is last thing Seaton needs

PUBLISHED: 14:59 16 April 2009 | UPDATED: 23:23 15 June 2010

WITH the amount of rubbish on beaches reported to be at its highest level ever, Seaton businesses fear tourists will be put off and the town's economy further damaged.

WITH the amount of rubbish on beaches reported to be at its highest level ever, Seaton businesses fear tourists will be put off - and the town's economy further damaged.The Marine Conservation Society found that UK litter has increased by 110 per cent since 1994 to 2,195 pieces per kilometre.But the South West is the worst hit area in the country - largely because it attracts a high number of tourists - with 4,784 pieces per kilometre.Society co-ordinator Emma Snowden said rubbish can harm wildlife, be costly to clear from the coastline, discourage tourists and damage fishing equipment.Owner of New Look News newsagent, in Harbour Road, Marcus Hartnell said: "As a shop owner in a tourist town, I am concerned to hear about this report. "We have an awful lot going against us - the recession, closure of the holiday camp and bad weather."Anymore more bad news to hit the tourist industry isn't good at all."Mayor Sandra Semple said litter collection should be a priority in all seaside towns.She said: "Nobody is going to come to a dirty town, no matter where it is. "Seaton is not particularly bad but we could do with more bins and litter collections, particularly in the tourist season. The cleaner a place is the cleaner people keep it."She added that volunteers helped clean the beach and that East Devon District Council put out many bins. But she called for more bins for paper and glass disposal.Town councillor and sustainable Seaton member Claire Wise said the findings show the environment is at risk and called on people to act responsibly.She said: "It's absolutely appalling. The implications go beyond just what you see. We have got to address this."I don't think Seaton is as bad as some places, but I would say the majority of litter is what people have left on the beach - rather than washed up stuff."The council has paid people to pick up litter and there are plenty of bins which are emptied regularly. So if people aren't putting rubbish in bins, it's just thoughtless. We need to educate them on the further implications.

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