WREXHAM Council’s decision to charge supermarkets to get their abandoned shopping trolleys back has been welcomed – by one of the retailers.
Local authority bosses have declared war on what they say is a problem “in many neighbourhoods” by charging shops £60 for each trolley returned to them by authority officers from April 26.
The move was agreed at an executive board meeting on Tuesday and has now been welcomed by the very companies who will have to pay up to get their trolleys back.
A spokesman for Asda, which has a store on Holt Road, said: “We’re not strongly opposed to this as we do like to look after our trolleys.
“Not only do we want to protect local areas but they are very expensive (a new shopping trolley costs in the region of £350).
“We share the council’s concerns about abandoned trolleys – that’s why we do everything we can to ensure that none of them go walkies from our stores.
“Most of our customers can be trusted with trolleys but we’d plead once again with the minority of people that do take them off site and abandon them to stop doing so, and ask anyone else who sees one abandoned to give us a call so that we can go and collect it.”
A spokesman for Tesco, which has a store on Crescent Road, said: “We work hard to prevent trolleys being taken away from our stores for both environmental and financial reasons.
“In addition to the blight on the local environment caused by an abandoned trolley you also have to consider staff time to retrieve them from the streets and the cost of replacing them if damaged.”
When asked specifically whether the company supported or opposed the move, he said there would be no further comment.
Speaking at the executive board meeting where the decision was taken, Cllr Mark Pritchard said: “I actually think it is far too cheap but once we have got a policy in place I suppose we can increase it as we go along.”
Steve Jones, divisional manager for the council’s Streetscene service, said his staff were currently recovering about 50 trolleys every month from locations around the county.
Cllr Rodney Skelland said: “I can never understand at what stage does it become a criminal offence when somebody steals a trolley?
“Where are our PCSOs when people are pushing the trolleys along the highways and paths?”