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Lorry drivers 'using town as a toilet'

"Lady doing a litter pick was disgusted by what she found"

LONG-distance lorry drivers continue to use town streets as a toilet.

The issue was first raised in the Newbury Weekly News in 2018 – and it has clearly not been resolved.

At an online meeting of Hungerford Town Council’s highways and transport committee on Monday, the issue of human waste being deposited in the hedgerows of Charnham Park was back on the agenda.

Town mayor Helen Simpson said the problem had proved so intractable that West Berkshire Council should consider placing double yellow lines along the route to prevent overnight parking in the area.

Ironically, however, it was reported by one town councillor three years ago that West Berkshire Council highways officers “like the fact that vehicles park there – because it’s traffic calming”.

At Monday’s meeting, Mrs Simpson said residents continued to report “bottles of urine and faeces in carrier bags” being dumped in the road, on pavements and in hedgerows.

She added: “One lady doing a litter pick was disgusted by what she found.

“It’s not a one-off because it’s been on the agenda before. It’s absolutely disgusting and I don’t know what the answer is.”

The meeting was told that local petrol station staff were not allowed to let people use their facilities as a 24-hour public convenience.

Councillor Rob Chicken suggested central Government should make it a legal requirement for companies employing long-distance lorry drivers to provide on-board, chemical toilet facilities.

But district councillor Dennis Benneyworth (Con, Hungerford and Kintbury) said: “Often it’s owner drivers or single operators doing trips as cheaply as they can. It’s unacceptable, but it’s a problem throughout the country.”

The committee agreed to take the matter up with West Berkshire Council and to investigate the possibility of installing security cameras in the area.

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