BRIGHT pinks bins installed to deter people from dropping chewing gum on the pavements have been removed due to complaints they don’t fit in with Colchester’s historic town centre.

A total of 34 bright pink gum recycling bins were installed in hotspots by Colchester Council as part of a partnership with Gumdrop Ltd back in 2019.

The bins have proven a hit, with gum litter reported to have dropped in some parts of the town by as much as 81 per cent since their installation.

Back in September 2019 the first batch of Gumdrop bin inserts sent back to Gumdrop for recycling weighed in at 11.14kg - the same weight as about 30 cans of soup.

However, Colchester Council has confirmed it has been advised by Essex County Council the bins aren’t suitable for the town centre.

A spokesman said alternative options to the bright pink bins were being explored.

He said: “We have been advised by Essex County Council the brightly-coloured gum bins are not in keeping with the local historic character of the town centre.

“Due to branding requirements, the supplier would not agree to the bins being replaced with darker-coloured versions, so unfortunately we have had to remove them while we continue to explore alternative options.”

Colchester Council’s former waste boss Martin Goss said the decision by County Hall, made during his time in position, was baffling.

He said: “This is a retrograde step for Colchester and the pavements will become littered again with chewing gum.”

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An Essex Highways spokesman said Colchester Council had not actually applied to renew the licence for the gum bins.

He added: “These effective gum bins were introduced by Colchester Council under a year’s temporary licence for street furniture from Essex Highways.

“At Colchester Council’s request, we agreed to renew the licence for another year, which expired in January 2021.

“Since January we have several times reminded the town centre management they must either re-apply for a licence or remove the bins.

“To date, Essex Highways has not received a re-application for a licence.”