Tanygrisiau schoolchildren's clean-up campaign

Date: 07/07/2017

When children at Ysgol Tanygrisiau, Blaenau Ffestiniog, recently began to find dog mess on paths and pavements near their school they decided to do something about it.

The pupils were also eager to tackle the littering problem around their community, so they called in Gwynedd Council’s Tidy Towns officer though Blaenau’s Dref Werdd initiative, to come and help them with their campaign.

Jonathan Neale from Gwynedd Council’s Tidy Towns team had visited the school last year with the Tidy Towns Roadshow, which over the past three years has provided local environment-themed entertainment in the county’s schools.  The children at Tanygrisiau were very keen to put their energies to good use by designing posters to highlight the environmental problems in the village.

Local Gwynedd Councillor Annwen Daniels said:  “The children at Ysgol Tanygrisiau know what they want when it comes to their local area – a safe and clean environment to play in and discover. It’s great that they have spoken out on the litter and dog mess problems. Tanygrisiau is a fantastic playground for children, so why should they have to put up with dog mess and litter?”

Gwynedd Council’s Highways and Municipal Cabinet Member, Councillor Gareth Wyn Griffith, noted: “These posters are really colourful and get the message across in a way that should get us thinking a little more about what kind of environment we want our kids to grow up in. Tanygrisiau’s landscape is both historic and dramatic and it must be a great place to grow up – so let’s help its children make it clean and tidy.”

Though Gwynedd compares well with other areas in Wales for street cleanliness, littering and its effects are still a persistent problem effecting some communities. Those who thoughtlessly throw rubbish in any public place are committing a crime. A person found guilty of littering can receive a fine of up to £2,500.

Many dogs are infected with parasites which can be harmful to people, especially children. Toxocariasis is a disease caused when the eggs of toxocara worms are transferred from dogs to people through infected dog mess or soil. Infection can lead to illness and even blindness.

In Gwynedd it is a criminal offence to take a dog onto designated children’s play areas, school grounds, sports pitches and certain beaches (April-September) or to allow your dog to foul any public space. Offenders are liable to receive a £100 fixed penalty, with failure to pay potentially leading to a court summons and a fine of up to £1,000.

For more information regarding Gwynedd Council’s Tidy Towns scheme, contact the team on 01766 771 000 or send an e-mail to trefitaclus@gwynedd.gov.uk