LITTERING will continue to be a problem at beauty spots around the County until there is a change in people’s attitude and behaviour, the Chief Executive of Fermanagh and Omagh District Council has warned.

Speaking at the Council’s monthly meeting, Brendan Hegarty said the local authority had spent £10 million last year on refuge collection, refuge disposal, street cleaning and dealing with litter.

Mr. Hegarty said: “That’s an enormous sum of money to still have the level of problems that we’re having. Throwing money at that to deal with it is not actually going to solve it until there is an actual change in attitude and change in behaviour.

“That said, we have put additional resources in place temporarily in the good weather to deal with it as best we can, but despite what we put at it, the problem persists.”

The Chief Executive earlier told the meeting that the Council were doing what they could “within the resources available to us”.

He said: “There’s a lot of attention on the Council in terms of what the Council is doing. It would be even more beneficial if attention would fall on those who were causing the problem, as opposed to the Council who are trying to deal with the problem.”

Mr. Hegarty said that there were certain “hot spots” that the Council were proposing to monitor.

“If we’re to make any success with this, it does come down to a change in behaviour,” he added.

Councillor David Mahon said that the littering was posing a risk to children, especially with all the broken glass.

Mr. Mahon said: “As far as I’m led to believe, it’s people coming from outside the Council area mostly in this particular spot in Kesh. They’re coming for the weekend and they’re leaving the rubbish behind them. It is a real problem.”

Councillor Robert Irvine urged people to “do something about it” if they see anyone dropping litter.

Mr. Irvine said: “I go on holiday to other countries and I’m amazed at how litter-free they are. It’s not through public servants cleaning up, it’s the individual citizens taking their responsibility right to the core of not creating a problem that has to be solved by somebody else.

“What needs to be stated is that we, as a Council, are chasing other people and cleaning up after them. We are actually using up vital resources that could be put into use elsewhere for the benefit of the citizens in our Council area.”

He added: “It’s the few that actually create the problem and we need to throw the spotlight on them.”

Last week, the Impartial Reporter launched its very own Keep Fermanagh Tidy campaign to raise awareness of the growing problem of illegal dumping in the County.

One concerned reader, who did not wish to be named, has since provided pictures of overflowing bins at Castle Archdale Forest.

Another reader, Patricia Donnelly, feels the Council spends too much money and resources on clearing litter and not enough on prevention.