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Illegal Dumping In Our Towns (I.D.I.O.T)

Chewing Gum Taskforce

Chewing Gum Task Force

We are one of 56 councils across the country that have successfully applied to the Chewing Gum Task Force, now in its second year, for funds to clean gum off pavements and prevent it from being littered again.

We have been awarded £25,000 of government funding from the Department for Environment Food & Rural Affairs (Defra) to put plans in place to remove the chewing gum that blights our local streets.


What is the Chewing Gum Task Force?

The Chewing Gum Task Force was established by the government department Defra and is run by environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy. It brings together some of the UK’s major chewing gum producers (Mars Wrigley and Perfetti Van Melle) in a new partnership to remove gum litter from UK high streets and prevent future littering.

The scheme, administered by independent charity Keep Britain Tidy, sees the chewing gum firms invest up to £10 million over five years to achieve two objectives; cleaning up historic gum staining and changing behaviour so that more people bin their gum.

Keep Britain Tidy is a leading environmental charity. It sets the standard for the management of parks and beaches, inspire people to be litter-free, to waste less and live more sustainably. It runs campaigns and programmes including the Great British Spring Clean, Eco-Schools, Love Parks, the Green Flag Award for parks and green spaces and the Blue Flag/ Seaside Awards for beaches.

To find out more about Keep Britain Tidy, and its campaigns and programmes visit the Keep Britain tidy website here.


Why is the Chewing Gum task force being launched?

Estimates suggest the annual clean-up cost of chewing gum for councils in the UK is around £7 million and, according to Keep Britain Tidy, around 77% of England’s streets and 99% of retail sites are stained with gum.

To find out more about the Chewing Gum Task force visit the Chewing Gum Task Force Website


Where is the Chewing Gum Task Force launching?

The city centre will be the location for the project which will officially launch in August 2023, with artwork specifically designed to help encourage residents and visitors to dispose of chewing gum in the correct way, rather than using the floor.

We take littering extremely seriously. It is a crime with a maximum fine of £2,500.

We can issue a penalty notice for:

  • failing to comply with a street littler control notice or litter charging notice
  • distributing flyers or other leaflets on land where it's forbidden
  • fly-tipping

For more information click the link below:

Penalty Notices for littering


Illegal dumping

We are not only cracking down on rubbish and chewing gum littering our streets. Illegal dumping of larger items or volumes of waste is being dealt with through our Illegal Dumping In Our Towns (IDIOT) campaign. For more information click the link here to go to our IDIOT page.

To find out the latest news on dumped rubbish and litter go to:

Dumped rubbish and litter news