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Last Updated: Sunday, 3 July, 2005, 12:56 GMT 13:56 UK
Massive clean-up following Live 8
Early morning joggers run in the mess left by the Live 8 crowds in Hyde Park

One of the UK's biggest concerts has also seen one of the largest clean-ups.

Westminster Council says the estimated 150 tonnes of rubbish generated by the Live 8 crowd would be the amount normally collected in around 10 days.

The litter levels are set to beat the previous record, set by the May Day demonstrations in 2000.

Westminster says the total left by all 205,000 revellers, at an average of three kilos per person, could be up to 650 tonnes - enough for 72 dustcarts.

Some four times the normal staffing levels were needed, as the authority also had to clear up after Gay Pride, the cricket final at Lord's and the screening of Wimbledon finals in Covent Garden piazza.

It is the biggest event operation we have ever undertaken
Westminster Council spokesman
Twenty workers, together with six mechanical sweepers, three caged vehicles, three more flushing vehicles and two dustcarts worked throughout the concert, with around 45 more policing the queues.

Another 50 Royal Parks staff were also involved in the task of keeping the site clean.

"It is a huge operation. It is the biggest event operation we have ever undertaken," a council spokesman said.

Staff offered to forgo holiday, or take lieu time at a later date, to help with the massive operation.

The spokesman added: "We are quite used to these things: every New Year's Eve we get more people in central London than go to Ibiza in a whole summer season.

"There are not many cleansing staff in central London on leave today - if any!"

He added it was "virtually impossible" to guess how much the cost of the clear up would be, as they have a 32 million-a-year contract with Onyx, who have not charged extra for the operation.


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