'Don't be a tosser' – Council launches new anti-littering campaign with help from talented artist

Aberdeenshire Council has launched a new anti-littering campaign in an effort to tackle litter in our countryside and on our coastline with the help of a talented artist.

Artist Andrea Hall has given the Council permission to use two of her eye-catching designs free of charge as the background for two posters, which read ‘Don’t be a Tosser’ and ‘Swim against the Tide.’

Andrea’s work is inspired by her own experience – the locations in her designs are real places where she has visited and swam.

Over the coming weeks, the posters will be displayed in parks and open spaces across Aberdeenshire in a bid to encourage people to take their litter home.

The posters are being introduced in support of Zero Waste Scotland’s national litter prevention campaign, which has been launched in partnership with the Scottish Government and Keep Scotland Beautiful on the back of Covid-19 restrictions easing.

The national campaign by ZWS encourages people to reduce litter and dispose of their waste responsibly when spending time outdoors. The organisation have prepared a variety of tips and resources, available on their website, which offer advice on minimising waste in natural spaces.

Keep Scotland Beautiful have also launched a new campaign called ‘Clean Up Scotland’ – a campaign designed to tackle “lockdown litter” (litter that has accumulated during the lockdown period). ‘Clean Up Scotland’ aims to raise awareness on the consequences of litter while encouraging groups and communities to organise local litter picks.

Despite the sterling efforts of cross-council services to relay the anti-littering message, many individuals continue to dump rubbish in our towns, villages, and natural spaces.

The problem has recently been exacerbated by hundreds of visitors making trips during the easing of lockdown and treating the countryside with disrespect.

Both the Aberdeenshire Ranger Service and the Cairngorms National Park Authority recently reported a significant rise in waste found in the countryside, including large quantities of litter, discarded barbeques and camping equipment, human waste, and broken glass.

They advise visitors to plan ahead, research which public toilets are open in the area, and take their litter home if bins are full.

Councillor Peter Argyle, chair of Aberdeenshire Council’s Infrastructure Services Committee, said: “It is disheartening to see our lovely towns, villages, and open spaces tarnished with such needless litter. With restrictions easing, I urge residents to respect their communities and make environmentally conscious decisions when spending time outdoors.”

Cllr John Cox, vice-chair of Aberdeenshire Council’s Infrastructure Services Committee, said: “Regrettably, litter is an ongoing problem in Aberdeenshire. In good weather this problem escalates with many more people out and about. The new posters are a positive step towards highlighting this issue. Litter is not only a huge cost for the council, but there is also danger of broken glass being left behind in our wonderful countryside, playparks and towns and villages. I am optimistic and hopeful the posters will help raise awareness and dissuade people from dropping and leaving their rubbish behind.”

To see more of Andrea Hall’s designs: https://andreahall.co.uk/

To find out more about Zero Waste Scotland’s anti-litter campaign: https://bit.ly/ZWS-Prevent-Litter

To get involved in ‘Clean up Scotland’: https://bit.ly/CleanUpScot