ONE of Poole’s busiest high streets is blighted by litter and dog fouling, according to traders.

Michael Stott, who runs Sweet As U Like in Ashley Road, regularly cleans the pavement outside his shop but says it’s an uphill struggle.

He says the council cleans the streets regularly but should try a crackdown with fines for offenders.

He said a lot of the litter originated with take-aways. “You can’t blame the people who sell it because they’re doing their job – it’s the people who drop it,” he said.

The area also had problems with dog fouling, he said. “If they were to put signs up and say they were going to start fining people £50 or £60, it would help,” he said.

Ray Cooke, from nearby Terry’s Butchers, pictured below, said he cleaned outside his shop every morning.

“Every morning it has to be swept up. I know we do get the roads swept quite a lot but they don’t always get it all,” he said.

Christine Brown, who works at hairdresser Short and Curly, said she had seen problems with take-away litter, bottles and even people collapsed unconscious on the pavement.

Richard McClelland, proprietor of the Ashley Cafe, said he stopped calling the council about litter after making 100 phone calls in a couple of years.

“They’re supposed to sweep the street every day because it’s part of a main high street but they don’t,” he said.

“I’ve given up ringing them but some of the other traders still give them a ring and ask.”

One resident said: “You don’t see the bloke picking up the litter like you used to. You see the sweeper but they don’t pick up the little bits the machine can’t get.”

Newtown councillor Brian Clements said he would take up the issue on behalf of Mr Stott.

“The enforcement is probably more difficult than the cleaning but I’m quite happy to pass his complaint on and get back to him,” he said.

Ian Poultney, Poole’s contracts and performance manager for environmental and consumer protection, said: “Ashley Road is cleaned thoroughly each morning using a mechanical sweeper and we carry out regular monitoring to ensure the area is kept clean.

“Unfortunately, the council has limited resources and must target its enforcement activities in those areas of greatest need. However, where our civil enforcement officers do witness individuals dropping litter they will take appropriate action to issue a fixed penalty notice.”