During the festival last year the number of complaints about waste on the streets, particularly in the city centre rose markedly.

Now the council says that the number of calls to them about waste and cleansing have gone down by over a quarter compared to the same time last year.

Matters such as fly-tipping, litter, communal bins and dog fouling are included in these statistics but a new plan which was agreed in autumn 2016 is beginning to have an effect. There are more staff in place to deal with rubbish and there is more engagement on social media too.

The council also claims that the Our Edinburgh campaign which aims to make residents more aware of how they can get rid of their big bulky items has begun to work.

Cllr Lesley Macinnes, Transport and Environment Convener, said: “As ever, we want to ensure Edinburgh is as clean and tidy as possible for both residents and visitors and, thanks to our hard-working staff, this is a really positive start to one of the city’s busiest times of the year. It is also clear evidence that measures such as increased staffing and the Our Edinburghcampaign are working well.

“We hope to be able to continue to manage this demand, however, we rely on the public doing their share too. We would encourage people to always take care when disposing of their rubbish to help make the Capital as beautiful as we all know it is.”

Improvements in place this summer

  • More than 40 additional staff will provide 24-7 street cleansing support over the busy summer months, joining the existing team of 90 working across the city’s Old and New Town.
  • Additional bin collection resources, as well as more frequent collections, during the busy months.
  • Day time ‘barrow beat’ staff, who are responsible for cleaning around 180km of streets, will be assisted by a night services crew, on hand to service litter bins and trade waste near pubs, clubs and fast food shops.
  • Dedicated Environmental Wardens will patrol the area, focusing on particularly busy periods, to discourage litter-dropping and fly-tipping, working alongside the Waste Compliance Team to enforce again any trade waste infringements by businesses.
  • The public will be encouraged to do their part too, with a series of comedy-themed posters, online videos, ‘bin me’ stickers for takeaway packaging and popular ‘ballot’ cigarette bins designed to encourage responsible rubbish disposal, as part of the ongoing Our Edinburgh campaign.


Find out more about reporting litter on the Council website.


  1. Would like to highlight the appalling state of Edinburgh football pitches. We are witnessing pictures of pitches where grass has not been cut and pitch has been lined. Where pitches have been cut the grass cuttings hsve been left all over the pitches. Leaving teams to rake grass before a ball is kicked. Quite embarassing to say the least. This appears to be a worrying trend throughout Scotland. Councils are forced to make budget cuts and grass football pitches are bearing the brunt of the cutbacks.

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