Page last updated at 06:35 GMT, Wednesday, 11 February 2009

Litter on streets feels 'unsafe'

Fly-tippping in London
People in less affluent areas of London did not report littering

Areas marred by fly-tipping, litter and graffiti on streets make Londoners feel less safe, research by environmental campaign group Keep Britain Tidy found.

More than 2,400 people were surveyed outside Tube stations and on high streets about what sort of areas made them feel safe when they went out.

Nearly 25% said litter was a big issue in their area, while one in five were concerned about dog fouling.

About 70% were happy with cleanliness in their area and felt safe going out.

'Cause for optimism'

Less than 20% of respondents said they were satisfied with the way a place even though they were not at all satisfied with how safe they felt there.

Phil Barton, chief executive of Keep Britain Tidy, said: "Residents feel less safe in streets which are blighted by problems such as litter and graffiti.

"There is a clear correlation between the prevalence of low level anti-social behaviour and people's fear of more serious crime."

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The survey was held by Keep Britain Tidy

The research also suggested that there was a "climate of resignation" in less affluent areas of the capital and therefore residents did not report poor environmental standards, he said.

Mr Barton urged local authorities to encourage Londoners to report such problems and respond to them quickly.

Kenny Wilks, of Capital Standards, a partnership between local councils, Keep Britain Tidy and other London organisations, said the results were optimistic.

"While the study has identified some problems that must be addressed, it also gives much cause for optimism.

"Two thirds of people are satisfied with their area as a place to live while half are content with how safe they feel," he said.



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