Keep Britain Tidy

Keep Britain Tidy

Keep Britain Tidy  campaigns on a wide range of  litter  issues,  they run the Eco-Schools programme, the Blue Flag/Quality Coast beach awards, as well as the Green Flag Awards in England.   They  assist local authorities and other land managers in improving performance in local environmental quality.  They run training courses for local authority staff on issues like tackling environment crime.   They produce the Local Environmental Quality Survey of England (LEQSE)  on behalf of DEFRA which looks at litter, detritus , fly-posting, fly-tipping, and  graffiti.

Their Chief Executive is Phil Barton. They have about 120 members of staff. Their annual income is around £10 million a year.  Half comes from Government (Defra – Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs).  They also obtain revenue  from the research and training  they do for local authorities.  The Chief Executive reports to a Board of 11 trustees

It is understood that the subsidy from DEFRA will be substantially reduced over the next few years.

Jeremy Paxman has said “It’s 56 years since the foundation of the Keep Britain Tidy campaign, and if you want to see how successful this well-meaning yet feeble organisation has been, take a look around us at the trash on the streets

He has a point.  My concern with Keep Britain Tidy is that they are not an independent organisation being dependent for their  income on central (DEFRA) and local government. They are hardly likely to berate their sponsors for failing in their duties under the Environmental Protection Act to ensure the land under their control is kept free of litter or, in the case of local authorities, for not fining enough people for littering offences. Instead they focus on campaigns to try to modify the behaviour of the public.

I have had a good look at their web site and could see only  one reference to EPA Section 91 Litter Abatement Orders.  These enable anyone aggrieved at  the littered state of public land to take action in the courts against the relevant duty body, such as  a local authority, the  Highways Agency or Netwok Rail, to force them to clean it up.   The reference is at the bottom of a leaflet and asks anyone interested to contact them for information.

There are some informative pages on their web site, for example Links  and. Guidance for Sections 96 and 97 of the  Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act 2005 – Littering & dog fouling



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