Larne schoolboy points the way to litter reduction

Larne Grammar School pupil, Samuel Whaley with the Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Councillor Paul Reid. INCT 26-758-CON
Larne Grammar School pupil, Samuel Whaley with the Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Councillor Paul Reid. INCT 26-758-CON

A community-spirited schoolboy has been praised by the Mayor of Mid and East Antrim Borough Council for his suggestions on how to tackle littering in Larne.

Samuel Whaley, aged 12, wrote to the council’s chief executive to express his concern about the problem in his hometown, adding that it is vital everybody works together to reduce the blight on our surroundings.

First citizen Councillor Paul Reid was so taken by the year 8 pupil’s attitude he visited him at Larne Grammar School on Friday to congratulate him.

Cllr Reid said: “I wanted to personally thank Samuel on behalf of council for taking the time to write such a brilliant letter in which he expressed his deep frustration at those who continue to litter in our borough.

“The vast majority of our residents are diligent and respect the environment, but unfortunately there are those who continue to flout the rules and show a disregard for nature and our beautiful surroundings.

“We want to ensure our streets, parks and beaches are free from litter so they are safe and clean for residents and visitors to enjoy, and if everybody had the same attitude as Samuel that would be the case all year round.”

In his correspondence to the local government authority, Samuel wrote: “The thing about litter is the fact that it takes so long to rot away.

“There is also a more serious side to litter as well as just looking disgraceful.

“It can and has caused vehicle accidents and injuries, smother plants, start fires and harm or kill animals.

“It also attracts rats and harmful bacteria. So, as you can see, clearing litter could actually help a lot.”

He added that if residents all work together “we can solve the problem of litter”.

Anybody caught dropping litter in Mid and East Antrim could be issued with an on-the-spot fine of £80.