Tuesday, July 10, 2007

London Free Papers Create Waste

In Shepherd's Bush, official notices have been fastened to lampposts near the tube stations regarding the handing out of free literature. The number of people handing out the London Sh*te and London Pooper have decreased - it's possible to walk by the tube stations having copies forced into my hands. London boroughs are clamping down on these litter-generating free papers.

Westminster City Council said abandoned free Sh*tes and Poopers create 4 tonnes of waste daily. That's their combined daily circulation of 900,000 copies (I wonder how many are actually read). They've given these publications a one-month deadline to tackle this waste before tough measures are imposed. The Metro (aka the Sh*tro) evidently doesn't count as you have to pick that up yourself and they seem to get left on tube trains along with unwanted sections of The Evening Standard.

The zones most blighted by discarded freesheets are apparently round stations at Charing Cross, Embankment, Oxford Circus, Victoria and around Leicester Square and Charing Cross Road. Sometimes Oxford street seems to be carpeted with freesheets all the way from Centrepoint (Tottenham Court Road tube station) to Oxford Circus. There are so many that even the inhabitants of cardboard cities don't need any more to insulate their bashes.

The papers' owners have been asked to sponsor 150 recycling bins and a vehicle but they have been unable to agree on costs which means nothing is being done except to ask the people handing the papers out to pick up discards (or maybe to take "no" for an answer). The council has threatened to make it illegal to distribute freesheets and proposes a permit system in the worst affected areas unless the Sh*te and the Pooper start picking up their own litter. If they don't reach an agreement pretty soon there will be a few tonnes less of Sh*te and Poop on the streets of London each day.

Overheard at Oxford Circus Station: "I prefer the London Paper, it's better quality than London Lite." I almost fell down the stairs laughing. The only reason people pick them up is they're marginally better than reading the adverts inside tube train carriages on a long tube journey.