Hundreds of residents in Port Talbot have signed a petition calling for beach wardens to be introduced in Aberavon to tackle littering.
In a petition to Neath Port Talbot council, locals have called for beach wardens to be stationed along Aberavon beach with the power to fine and ban people for littering in the area.
Mal Emerson, who started the petition, said there is rubbish “all along the sea-front” which “has been a long-standing problem”.
“Neath Port Talbot Council and police need to take responsibility to stop this.
“The council to be fair are superb but they are consistently fighting a losing battle.”
There are waste enforcement officers and dog wardens in Neath Port Talbot with the ability to issue fixed penalty notices for littering and dog fouling offences.
But residents want to the council to introduce specific wardens for Aberavon beach.
Mr Emerson, who has lived in Port Talbot all his life, said: “There are wardens in town centres so why can’t we have them on the beaches?”
The petition has received more than 700 signatures as of Wednesday afternoon.
Mr Emerson made the petition after noticing large amounts of rubbish left on Aberavon beach at the weekend.
He said the issue was worsened by the increased number of people visiting the beach in warm weather.
Current Welsh Government lockdown rules, introduced on Monday, mean people can travel up to five miles for leisure, and can visit parks and beaches to sunbathe too.
Port Talbot resident Gwen Sheehy was also angered by the litter left on the beach at the weekend, including “everything from barbecues, beer cans, bottles, left over food and packaging”.
“I walk the beach early every morning and the litter deliberately left is shocking especially in the summer after a nice evening.
“I cannot understand why people do this. It’s a beautiful beach that should be cherished and not abused.”
Mr Emerson praised volunteers who regularly clean the beach, adding: “They are absolutely incredible.
“Every morning the beach is impeccable. People are just not respecting it.”
The council advises anyone concerned with a litter problem to contact the Waste Enforcement Team at firstname.lastname@example.org or its customer service centre on 01639 686868.
You can find the petition here.