150 bags of rubbish collected in just five days along A14

Parking, roads and transport

28 July 2023

A14 litter pickers

National Highways has appealed to road users to always take home their litter after almost 153 bags of rubbish were collected in just five nights along a stretch of the A14 in the East Midlands.

Mesh fencing and vehicle parts including tyres were amongst the litter and debris collected from the westbound carriageway of the road between junctions 9 and 10 in Northamptonshire.

National Highways has been carrying out essential maintenance along the stretch which has meant some overnight road closures.

To minimise the need to shut the road again in the near future, North Northamptonshire Council took the opportunity to clean up the roadside and verges in safety during the closures.

The 153 bags were collected on the westbound carriageway and comes after 105 bags of rubbish were recently picked up on the eastbound verge. Together a total of 1,800kg – almost two tonnes – of litter has been cleared from this stretch of roadside.

No-one wants to see litter strewn along the roadside as they go about their day, it is unsightly and a threat to the environment, wildlife and vehicles using our roads.

We have to close roads to safely clear up the mess and invest money in litter picking that we all agree could be better spent elsewhere. We wouldn’t have to do that if people could be more considerate and always take their rubbish home.

Road closures can be a nuisance but we do work closely with local authorities to organise litter picks during our planned closures to minimise that disruption for drivers and communities.
National Highways Construction Assurance Manager, David Marlow
As with previous litter picks on stretches of roads across North Northamptonshire, this really shows how partnership working can make a difference. 

It simply wouldn’t be safe for our teams to work whilst the A14 is open, so the fact that we have been able to use this planned closure to collect almost two tonnes of rubbish over a 5 night closure, is great and I hope anyone using the stretch can see the difference.

Of course, we cannot track where the rubbish collected has come from, but wanted to take this opportunity to remind everyone, residents of North Northamptonshire and visitors alike, that this type of litter picking costs everyone and we would rather that this money and time was spent on something that contributed to the wider community.
Cllr Matt Binley, North Northamptonshire Council’s Executive Member for Highways, Travel and Assets

Work finished last week on the maintenance scheme being carried out by National Highways to clear and improve the drainage system in this area and alleviate the risk of flooding.