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David Johnson MP for Wantage secured an Adjournment debate on Safety and Littering: A34 and A420 on 10th November 2020. He said:

We then come to litter. I have had reports and complaints about litter on both roads. I have had complaints about the A420, but it is fair to say that I get many more about the A34 …… one company is responsible for mowing the verges along the A34 and another is responsible for picking up the litter……..

The question on littering, which I pose to the Minister and which a number of constituents posed to me, is: why can Highways England not be responsible for clearing litter on the A34? …..

In response DfT minister Rachel Maclean said:

I recognise fully the unpleasant impacts of roadside litter, and the Government are committed to continuing to target the issue of litter on our road network, combining prevention with cure, in order to make our roads clean and safe places to work and travel ….. As elsewhere, however, Highways England recognises its responsibility and works in partnership with local authorities to reduce littering on the A34, for example, by giving them access during planned roadworks. In that way, nearly half a tonne of litter and other debris was collected on 21 September alone—an astonishing figure, as I am sure hon. Members agree.

Three things to note:

1. She failed to answer David Johnson’s question.

2. She came out with the same old tired excuses about partnership working.

3. She seems to think it an achievement that half a ton of litter and debris was allowed to accumulate on a section of this road.

Debate in full

DfT prevaricate over transfer of cleansing of ATPRs from councils to Highways England


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