More than three tonnes of litter have been collected from the A45 at Wellingborough.
Wellingborough Norse collects refuse on behalf of Wellingborough Council and is required to clean areas along the A45 at least once a year.
In total, Norse recently collected 3.4 tonnes of litter from the outer verges in just eight nights and plans to return to clear the central reservation in the summer.
Items collected included cans, bottles, food wrappers (often thrown from cars) and some fly-tipped items such as tyres, an old sofa, unwanted children’s toys and drums of oil.
Wellingborough Council leader Martin Griffiths welcomed the clean-up, describing the amount of litter collected as ‘a hell of a lot.’
He said: “I went up there and they had done a fantastic job, but already you can see stuff being thrown out of cars, which is frustrating.”
Not only has the A45 litter pick helped cleared the roadside of rubbish, it has also inspired neighbourhood litter picking schemes across the borough.
Clearing litter from the A45 is a dangerous task and is only carried out by authorised teams when strict health and safety regimes are in place.
But with clearing rubbish from other parts of the borough not being so hazardous, help from residents and community groups is always appreciated by the council.
Wellingborough Norse supported one of these community litter picks in Lower Ecton Lane on March 24, providing litter bags to the group.
Mayor of Wellingborough Cllr Paul Bell and wife Carol also accompanied Norse to clear the A45 lay-by adjacent to Irchester Country Park on March 25.
They were joined by about 20 staff from McDonalds, including the franchise owner, and together they collected more than half a tonne of rubbish.
Stephen Dunkley, cleansing manager at Wellingborough Norse, said: “It was a mammoth task, but when we left it was absolutely spotless.
“All of those involved got really stuck in and did a fantastic job, given the time we had on site.
“We collected in excess of 150 bags of rubbish, and overall with the small amounts of fly-tipped waste, we had around 600 kilos in weight all from the lay-by.”
And Mr Dunkley added: “There is a real problem with litter on our roads.
“As goes the Tidy Britain slogan, if you are not part of the problem, you are the solution.
“We have a service level agreement with the council and have improved our monitoring and schedules to ensure this is met.
“Even though the A45 only gets picked once a year, we have supported additional litter picking opportunities in conjunction with road closures.
“We are also helping to support local residents in their own efforts and generally are seeing more people take ownership where there is a problem with litter.
“We continue to ask people to throw away their rubbish in a responsible manner, using litter bins provided around the borough or by taking it home with them.”
The council is also holding a Spring clean event from April 27 to April 29 to spruce up the borough ahead of the Waendel Walk weekend.