A couple of weeks ago, an unusual advertisement appeared on RTE Radio 1. It called to attention the amount of litter on the N25 road from Cork to Midleton, sarcastically inviting people who wanted to see real litter to take a trip on this road. This was the brainchild of Zoe Malone of Ballymaloe Country Relish who decided to take Cork County Council to task in a very public manner*.

According to the County Manager Martin O’Riordan, this was a much more complex issue than it might seem. There were health and safety issues, the traffic would be disrupted and the costs would be astronomical. As a result, the county council did nothing for well over a year, leaving one of the busiest roads in Cork to become a veritable rubbish tip.

It’s an ongoing problem in Ireland. We spend billions on building new roads all over the country, but once they are up and running, no-one can be bothered to spend any money on maintaining them. Before long you have mounds of litter, overgrown hedges, unkempt verges and noxious weeds such as ragwort running riot.

Anyway, as you can see, it looks like the Cork County Council have come to their senses. The road is being cleaned this week. It’s just a pity that it required someone taking a public stand to prompt them into action. Well done to Zoe and the team at Irish Business against Litter.

* More information about this can be found on this stream (Real Player required) at the 14.43 minute mark.