Fly-tipping Fund

In response to Covid-19, PKC has set up a temporary Fly-tipping Fund of £20,000 to support communities affected by fly-tipping on private land in Perth and Kinross. The Fund welcomes applications from landowners, communities and individuals across Perth and Kinross who wish to carry out mini-projects to clear the fly-tipping and implement preventative actions at each site to resolve the localised problem long-term.

Rural locations, particularly such as those in Highland Perthshire, have always had issues with fly-tipping, often in beauty spots.  However, during lockdown and as restrictions lift, there has been a notable increase in fly-tipping.  This is totally unacceptable as within a week of Recycling Centres being open, people have been able to take any materials for recycling, and commercial-type vehicles including trailers have re-gained access.  However, there are still new reports of fly-tipping.

Fly-tipping creates a burden for landowners who need to access their fields to feed livestock daily or to harvest crops. The burden is also felt by wildlife who can become entangled in the rubbish and by people living in the rural communities; all suffering the blight of fly-tipping during walks along country lanes, past laybys, through woodlands or whilst commuting. In Highland Perthshire, one person has reported five separate fly-tipping locations over a very short period of time.  Unfortunately, a lot happens on rural remote roads, down embankments and on private land which makes it difficult to clear or at a cost. The temporary Fund not only helps to deliver a positive, quick solution but also demonstrates that fly-tipping is not acceptable.

Landowners, communities or individuals can apply to the Fund for the disposal of the fly-tipping and to finance preventative actions which will help to stop the fly-tipping at that location in the future. Preventative actions could include physical barriers (such as fencing), traffic prohibiting measures (such as posts or boulders), a local campaign, signage and/or CCTV. The Waste Services Team can provide advice to landowners on preventative actions and will also work with landowners to recover any relevant evidence to support further enforcement.

It is anticipated that each application will be in the region of £500 to £1,000 but there is not a minimum limit for funding requests and although the maximum funding award will be £3,000, in exceptional circumstances, a larger award may be made. The application process aims to take a maximum of 3 weeks so that there is quick access for those affected. To access the application form and guidance, please visit www.pkc.gov.uk/flytippingfund.

Meanwhile, to help prevent new cases of fly-tipping, householders are reminded that everyone has a legal Duty of Care to ensure that their unwanted items are only removed from their property by a licensed waste operator (the list can be found online at https://www2.sepa.org.uk/wastecarriers/) who can legally carry and correctly dispose of waste.  If items are in good condition, they can be passed on for reuse (www.pkc.gov.uk/wheretodonate) or unwanted items can either be collected from outside their home via a special uplift (www.pkc.gov.uk/specialuplifts) or taken to a Recycling Centre (www.pkc.gov.uk/recyclingcentres). Householders with a commercial-type vehicle or a trailer, wishing to access a PKC Recycling Centre are encouraged to check their recycling permit is up-to-date and review the new social distancing requirements at www.pkc.gov.uk/recyclingpermits

 

Take the lead – responsible dog walking

With so many people stuck at home and taking their daily exercise as locally as possible many paths are seeing more foot traffic than usual. If heading out on a walk please remember to take away or dispose of any litter and to pick up after your dog. Check the Scottish Outdoor Access Code for advice on walking responsibly.

Find out more here

At this time of year lambing is also well underway, so it is particularly important to keep dogs under close control where there may be livestock. Dogs can cause unnecessary worry that may contribute to the premature death of sheep as well as any unborn lambs. If you need to go into a field of sheep, keep your dog on a short lead or close at heel and keep your distance from the animals.

In the video below Bob Barr and Kate Hall share there experiences of dogs worrying sheep in the Lothians.

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Tree Planting in Viewlands Park

On 5th December a group of 20 volunteers – both members of the pubic and council employees – gathered to plant 88 trees up at Viewlands Park in Perth. We were lucky with the weather as a window of relatively rain-free opportunity was open to us for the hour and a half we were there. It’s surprising how quickly you can plant that many whips with a good few hands to the task, and makes you think what a difference can be made while having fun out in the fresh air. Now we just have to hope that they will thrive in time and give all the good things: beautiful foliage, cleaner air, habitat for fellow creatures, and extra carbon sink in these times of climate uncertainty.

By the end, a steaming cuppa and a biccy were welcome rewards!

Judging Day

On the 30th of Perth was judged in the Champion of Champions category for Britain in Bloom – which is the best in the whole of the UK!

This is the day that all the team has been working so hard for. The day started with the other apprentices and I dressing up as rubbish to meet the judges, we were dressed in costumes to raise awareness of litter.

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Lewis and I then had to make our way down to Needless for a last check. We then met with the judges for the second time to talk about the work that we had done on the bed and also talk about what we do at college.

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After this we also met them at the Rodney knot garden to explain that we have been restoring the bed and also explain what work we have been doing on the bed.

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We then went to Bracklyn Gardens for lunch where the provost and judges said their speeches and it was even filmed by STV! Thankfully the sun was shining all day making it a great day and the team done great.

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The photo gallery and video at the link below:

https://beautifulperth.org/blog/britain-in-bloom-judging-a-short-video/

 

 

New Block of Green Routes to Wellbeing in Perth

A new 6 week block of Green Routes to Wellbeing started last week clearing gorse and broom from the summit. Join us tomorrow at 10am for unlimited tea, coffee and chocolate biscuits while making St Magdalene’s Hill better for people and wildlife.

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Pond Spring Clean Under Way

Work started this week to clear out the pond in Scone Park. Over the last couple of years, the vegetation has grown and joined the island to the land. Vegetation is being removed from the pond to reinstate the island that makes it safer for the ducks and swans during nesting time. It will also create more surface area of water that will benefit the swans and ducks that make call it home. Work should be completed by early next week. Watch this space for updates….

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Litter is also being removed and so far 6 footballs have been collected and couting!

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Clearing Goarse and Broom at St Mags

On the 16th of October I was up St Mags with Joanna helping out a group called the six circle clearing back goarse and broom.

This is a really important job as the broom and gorse are taking over the hill and stopping other plants and trees from growing.

It is also really important as they can block some of the amazing views you can get on the summit.

The group worked really hard and managed to clear a lot, revealing that view of the Tay and the bridge.

I tried my first Cadbury Boost that day and I think its safe to say I found my new favourite chocolate.

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Tis the Season To Love Trees

Have you put your Christmas tree up yet? Trees make a huge contribution to our environment, our health and our economy as well as a centrepiece of Christmas. Forestry Commission Scotland has created a short video entitled ‘There’s more to Scotland’s forests than meets the eye’ that is well worth a watch. So sit back, relax and enjoy this video with a mince pie.

If, over the festive period you would like a break from Christmas T.V, Scotland’s Native Woodlands is an excellent short film presented by naturalist Nick Baker.

And these are informative too:

Native pinewoods – http://youtu.be/I6AaNp-5VN0
Upland birchwoods – http://youtu.be/jGzkh6X9ENk
Upland oakwoods – http://youtu.be/WV2LjVxObzM
Lowland mixed deciduous woodland – http://youtu.be/zNauIovTjCw

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Scottish Invasive Species Initative

Invasive Species are a tricky thing in Tayside. There is a multitude of different invasive species and they all come with different challenges. It is very difficult to conquer these without a catchment wide approach and large amount of parties working together to tackle it.

Invasive species alter our natural environment, they out-compete other native species and dominate areas, creating habitats which don’t provide the diversity our wildlife need to sustain themselves and their populations.

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Himalayan Balsam – An Invasive Species

The Scottish Invasive Species Initiative was covered on BBC Landward recently. This is a project funded over the next 3 years to tackle invasive species within several areas including Tayside.

There are training and volunteering opportunities within it find out more information here:  https://www.invasivespecies.scot/about-us.

These are great skills to develop for those who are part of the groups we support or lead and also for those looking to get involved in the land management sector.