A comment on Pride 2010 by Alan Griffiths, Cityparks

The cleansing company that Pride employed this year were not up to the job – very ineffective and City Clean had to be called in to help out.

They spent Monday & Tuesday clearing up and at one point had four road sweepers on the park sweeping and sucking up the glass, bottle tops etc. then on Wednesday I arranged for approximately 30-40 of our parks staff to do a handpick the main grass areas clearing as much of the glass as we could.

We will continue to litter pick over the coming days/weeks and have already responded to a number of specific complaints, although you indicate that the glass problem is far worse this year this is not the case – every year we are picking up glass weeks later! The event is in actual fact glass free but this of course does not stop people bringing in bottles in, these then get broken during the breakdown by the traders vehicles etc.

Please be assured Cityparks will do the best we can to make the park safe as possible over the coming days and weeks.

All the issues raised by the Pride event this year will be discussed at a debrief with the organisers and all agencies involved at the end of this month.

Alan Griffiths
Operations Manager (North)

Our response to Pride 2010

On August 9th, we sent the following letter to The Argus. It was included on the letters page on August 11th:

It would be obvious to anybody looking to make use of the facilities at Preston Park on Monday that something went wrong with the organisation of this year’s Pride event clean-up. The park was in a terrible condition, with rubbish everywhere, including broken glass ground into the grass by lorries.

In previous years the clean-up operation has been relatively swift and effective but on this occasion, some 36 hours after the event, the park was still largely unusable.

Pride has become integral to Brighton’s identity – but perhaps it is time to reassess how such an important event is organised. Is it really appropriate for the park to be out of action for so long right in the middle of the school holidays? Is Preston Park big enough to hold such massive crowds? Is there enough effort made to ensure such a large group of people is sensibly controlled?

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