Overseas visitors to Angus are telling hosts they are“shocked” by the heaps of litter dumped by the roadside in the county.
Caroline Townsend, who runs a holiday letting company, said visitors have told her rubbish left on the kerbside, particularly by the A90, is putting them off returning.
She said: “It’s something that overseas visitors comment on particularly, especially those from Germany and Austria. Litter throwing in their countries is extremely unusual and they are shocked to see it to such an extent.
“The people coming to this beautiful part of the world don’t understand why it’s happening.”
Her comments come after new figures revealed tourism is booming across Angus with a 37% increase in visitor numbers since 2010, according to annual tourism trends research done by Global Tourism Solutions (UK) Ltd.
Tourism generated £240 million in the local economy through visitor and business expenditure last year.
Ms Townsend said the county’s “litter shame” was hurting the area’s reputation.
One spot outside council offices at Orchardbank was particularly “disgraceful”, she added.
She called for more education.
“I think the council should do more to clean up the bins outside their offices, but the public are responsible,” she said.
“It’s difficult to know how to improve things. The police can’t deal with it. The council are struggling with a lack of resources, but really this is horrible.”
An Angus Council spokesman said the authority had taken action in a number of areas to tackle the “selfish behaviour of people who have no respect for others or our environment.”
He said the problem was often created by people travelling through the area in their vehicles.
“As a council, we have worked with fast food companies with the aim of tackling roadside litter and encouraging people to take responsibility for their rubbish.
“Our waste strategy officer works closely and continuously with primary and secondary schools in Forfar and across Angus in relation to tackling litter, dog fouling, and in promoting the importance of reducing waste and recycling more.”
He said the council was aware of the problems outside its offices in Orchardbank.
“We placed a bin in the area some time ago. Our staff attend every week to empty the bin and clean the area around it. They will also make additional visits as required.
“It is an offence to litter. Anyone found dropping litter can receive a fixed penalty notice of £80,” he added.