Furniture, takeaway wrappers, crisp packets and traffic cones are among heaps of rubbish strewn near a railway line in Bradford.

These pictures, taken off Valley Road, near Forster Square, show the mess that train passengers have to look at.

The Campaign for the Protection of Rural England (CPRE) wants to use Litter Abatement Orders to compel managers of public land to clear up the litter, which Bradford rail users say “reduces the positive images” passengers have of towns and cities.

Current CPRE president, author and former Craven resident Bill Bryson said: “This is not a complicated or controversial issue. Organisations responsible for public land are required to keep it clear of litter. If they’re not taking this responsibility seriously, we all have the power to compel them to do so.”

James Vasey, chairman of Bradford Rail Users Group, said: “Litter at the rail-side is unsightly and reduces the positive images passengers have when arriving into our local towns and cities.

“It is unfortunate that the liability would fall to Network Rail but litter such as discarded road cones and old gas bottles could if they landed on the track easily de-rail a train.”

Pete Myers, head of service quality for Northern Rail, which is responsible for the upkeep of stations, said those in the Bradford area generally maintained a high standard of litter control.

He said. “We urge our customers with station signage to take responsibility for their litter, by placing it in the bins provided, or taking it home.”

A Network Rail spokesman said the organisation was “surprised” at CPRE’s plans to encourage the service of Litter Abatement Orders. “As one of Britain’s biggest landowners we remove thousands of tonnes of litter every year,” he said. “If reported by the public, we aim to remove litter within 20 days.”

To report concerns about railway infrastructure, call Network Rail’s 24-hour helpline on (0845) 7114141.

  • Read the full story in Monday’s T&A