Commerical premises Beacon Press have attained over 500 signatures on a petition demanding the Government move the refuse bins that are located outside the shop
“For over two years The Beacon Press has had to put up with having 12 large refuse bins that service this area of town placed along the same side of the road as our shop all the way up to our entrance,” The Beacon Press shop said in a statement.
“This year to make matters worse a loading/unloading bay was situated right in front of our shop door from the end of the bins up to the top of Cloister Ramp.”
They said that the situation is so bad they had no alternative but to ask their customers to sign a petition demanding that the Government re-site both elsewhere.
According to the statement, the shop is encountering numerous problems as a result.
“The bins completely block the pavement on the south side of Cloister Ramp so that pedestrians walking up or down this road must do so in the middle of the road with goods and authorised vehicles driving through,” the shop said.
“The bins are always open and often overflowing, with rubbish spilling out over the road and between the bins and wall, covering the pavement. The smell is unpleasant. There has been an increase in cockroaches, rats and mice, and is generally an eyesore.”
“The road is used by tourists and others as a gateway route into Main Street giving a very bad first impression of cleanliness in Gibraltar. Our staff on one occasion, even had to put out a fire in one of the bins and this is unacceptable,” they added.
A loading/unloading bay has been situated directly in front of the shop’s door with just a small cross hatched area between the edge of the pavement and the bay.
Even if vans and lorries respect this space, when they park there, they block access to the shop, said the spokesperson.
“People, many of them children, have to walk up the middle of the road to the top to go around them to walk down to the shop door, at the same time as avoiding men unloading boxes and goods. Sometimes there are as many as three or four vehicles double parked in front of our entrance,” they said.
Several years ago, the business bought a new door and did other building works to improve access to the shop for wheelchair users and parents with prams/buggies.
“But now, on many occasions, our staff have had to serve clients outside the door as they have been unable to get in past the bins and the vehicles parked there.”
“There is a serious Health and Safety issue caused by loading and unloading taking place right in front of our entrance when children and other clients are coming in and out. It is an accident waiting to happen.”
According to the shop, they were told by the Department for the Environment that the bins had been sited there temporarily and that plans were being presented to the Development and Planning Commission for consideration.
If approved a new purpose-built bin area was to be constructed on Line Wall Road.
“These plans were approved earlier on this year but there has been no indication of when the works on the new bin area will begin. Until the bins are moved the loading bays cannot be re-sited and we will continue to suffer the consequences – both for our clients and for our business,” the statement read.
“We will be handing in our petition to the Minister for the Environment, Minister for Transport and the Minister for Equality to show the support we have from our clients for the re-siting of the bins and commercial parking bay. This petition has been signed by clients who use our shop. We have gathered a total of 525 signatories.”