MORE than 11kg of used gum has been collected from Colchester’s gum recycling bins.

Statistics show the amount of gum being dropped on pavements around Colchester has reduced.

Colchester Council declared war on gum litter louts at the beginning of the year when it launched its £10,000 Gumdrop campaign.

A total of 34 bright pink gumdrop mini-bins popped up across gum litter hotspots in Colchester.

The Better Colchester campaign has seen a reduction in the amount of gum litter dropped in the past year.

Following an extended programme of town centre cleaning, the introduction of the Gumdrop bins and the Gum Litter Blows campaign, the amount of gum litter in some areas of town has reduced by as much as 81 per cent.

Two gum litter counts, one conducted in October 2018 before the activity began, and one this month have shown positive results.

Martin Goss, Colchester councillor responsible for waste and environment, said it was great news for the town.

He said: “These figures are amazing and I am proud that, together with residents and visitors to our town, we have made such a positive difference to the way our pavements look.

“Gum litter is a disgrace and there is no need for it now we have special Gumdrop bins around the town centre.

“We can all work together to take pride in Colchester and continue to challenge and educate anyone who drops any kind of litter, for a Better Colchester.”

The first batch of Gumdrop bin inserts sent back to Gumdrop for recycling weighed in at 11.14kg - the same weight as about 30 cans of soup.

In October last year, there were 166 pieces of gum between Shoe Zone and Preto on Colchester High Street. At the September clean-up only 30 pieces were found.

At the Colchester Sixth Form College entrance on North Hill there were 627 pieces of gum last October compared to 313 this month.

From Subway to Silk Road in Queen Street there were 392 pieces of gum last October compared to 255 pieces of gum this month.

From the Salvation Army shop to Red Lion Books along the High Street there were 213 pieces of gum last October compared to 20 pieces this month.