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The A1 in Gateshead is part of England’s  Strategic Road Network. Maintenance such, as grass cutting, is carried out by the Highways Agency’s contractor. Litter picking is however the responsibility of the local council.   Chris Dawson was so concerned about the accumulations of litter along this important highways that he put in a freedom of information request to Gateshead Council. He was told that the road was litter picked just once a year.

I phoned Gateshead Environmental Services and was told that this regime had been introduced in the last year or two following a cut in staff numbers.

The e-mail from the council is reproduced below:

From: LES Waste Services and Grounds Maintenance
Sent: 06 February 2014 10:49
To: Dawson Chris

Subject: Freedom of Information – Local Environmental Services – Transport Cleaning and Catering

 Dear Mr Dawson

I refer to the Freedom of Information Act 2000 and to your letter to this department dated 30 January 2014.

In accordance with the Freedom of Information Act, we have formally decided to grant access to the records requested and accordingly they are as follows:


From: Dawson Chris
Sent: 30 January 2014 09:54
To: informationrights
Subject: FOI request

Good morning, Is it possible to get information on the planned litter picking and verge maintenance schedules for the section of the A1 and it’s slip roads which Gateshead Council are responsible? Many thanks, Chris


Gateshead Council undertakes litter picking once per year in liaison with the Highways Agency, and this takes place over a period of approximately 2 months, usually between February and March with a designated team. The Council does not maintain the verges of the A1(M) as this is done by the Highways Agency and their appointed sub-contractors. We maintain verges only on slip roads that do not require traffic management and do not pose health and safety risks.

The information provided in response to your request is copyright Gateshead Council unless otherwise endorsed. Granting access to this information under the Freedom of Information Act does not permit you to re-use the information provided for commercial purposes, for photocopying or reproduction in any form. If you wish to re-use the information you need to apply for a Licence. You can do this by writing to The Information Rights Officer, Legal and Corporate Services, 1st Floor, Civic Centre, Regent Street, Gateshead, NE8 1HH. You may be required to pay a fee or comply with conditions for permitted re-use.

Should you have any queries regarding the contents of this letter, please contact Local Environmental Services on 0191 433 7000.

Yours faithfully

Local Environmental Services

 Peter Silverman
3rd March 2014


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