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Breckland Council promise street cleaning as duck mess woe continues in Swaffham

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Ducks are continuing to be a nuisance in a market town’s churchyard and town centre.

Swaffham Town Council discussed the issue again during last week’s full council meeting due to the ongoing issue of duck mess at the parish church.

Town clerk Richard Bishop said talks had been taking place with Breckland Council over potential signage to discourage people from attracting the ducks by feeding them.

Ducks continue to cause concerns in Swaffham. Picture: Paul Marsh
Ducks continue to cause concerns in Swaffham. Picture: Paul Marsh

The council had previously considered trying to move the ducks away from the town centre after councillor Shirley Matthews had complained about them leaving the churchyard in a “filthy” state during a meeting in October.

But Mr Bishop told last week’s meeting that there had been no progress on the issue.

And councillor Ian Pilcher referred to a social media post by the landlord of the Red Lion pub, Rob Bartram, which suggested people in high visibility jackets had been feeding the ducks.

Mr Pilcher also complimented Mr Bishop on the tone of his correspondence with Breckland Council after there had “not been much support for the enquiries”.

Breckland councillor Ian Sherwood told the meeting: “It has and will be addressed. It is not a simple problem. If there was a simple answer it would have been dealt with already.

“It is up to Swaffham Town Council to work with Breckland Council.”

Mr Sherwood suggested there will be street cleaning and a pressure wash to deal with the mess.

He also highlighted the issue has been exacerbated in a rural area.

Councillor Matthews said she attended a funeral at the parish church on Tuesday where the ducks could be seen eating together.

She had previously said the duck mess was hazardous and could cause elderly members of the congregation to slip on it when walking to and from church.

Similar problems have also been reported on Pit Lane and Market Cross in Swaffham.

Businesses have also expressed their discontent over the issue in the town centre with some paying professional cleaners to remove the mess on a weekly basis.

The Greyhound Pub in the market place is one the businesses affected as calls continue for a solution to be found as soon as possible.

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