Respect Our Green Spaces – Leave no trace

Respect Our Green Spaces by Jenny Chalmers, AHDA Vice Chair

As the weather gets better and more people venture out to enjoy time in our parks, unfortunately that also often means trashing them!


After a few days of warmer weather I’ve already seen picnic debris left behind and barbecues happening in Fairlop Waters. I called out two women climbing the mistletoe tree (if you go over to the old golf course at Fairlop Waters you will know the one I mean), they were breaking off branches and collecting all the mistletoe.

The next day it was a couple letting their children trample over the daffodils in the park and pick them. These selfish and inconsiderate people have to realise that our parks are for everyone and it is actually illegal to pick or take anything from them!

BBQ’s and Litter

Another big no-no is barbecues in parks, again illegal throughout Redbridge and a huge fire risk, especially in the drier months. Don’t get me started on the dropped plastic bottles and other litter, if you carry something with you into the park you can carry it out with you.

Our park staff have plenty to do other than clean up after the litter louts. I like the “Leave No Trace” motto they have in some parts of the country. 

So what can we do? 

Obviously report to staff if you can find any but the only way to get an immediate response is to tell them off if you catch people engage in this type of anti-social behaviour, I find people generally respond and if we all cared enough to do this people will be more considerate.  

Also lead by example, I greatly appreciate the efforts of those who go out with their litter pickers and bags collecting other people’s mess, I find it can actually be quite therapeutic.  Keep the area round our houses clean, 5 minutes once a week to have a tidy up of your front garden or outside your flat shouldn’t be too much to ask. 

The Council has to spend far too much of our Council Tax clearing up after others, there are much better uses of this money! Please lets all do our bit to keep our parks and streets clean, no-one wants to live in a dump!

Parks and Public Spaces Protection Order

“Redbridge has a large number of parks and other green spaces that are enjoyed by the residents of Redbridge, and sometimes visitors from further afield too. The majority of parks users treat the spaces, and other users with respect. Unfortunately a significant minority do not respect the parks in Redbridge and fellow users.” For more see here and

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