London cracks down on 'paan'

Wembley, which is a major area of the borough of Brent, is replete with streets stained by paan spittle, particularly along High Road and Ealing Road.

The Brent council spends £20,000 every year to clean the stains left behind by consumers of paan.

Local councillor Gavin Sneddon said: “Paan staining is unsightly and contributes to a negative image that Wembley is dirty and rundown, which can lead to increased levels of crime and anti-social behaviour. By working together with the police and the local community we are confident that people will think twice before spitting on our streets.”

The council has declared that spitting paan is illegal and anyone caught doing so will be fined £80 for criminal damage.

The problem has been recognised as a major issue of concern for residents and visitors to Wembley.

Wembley’s streets are cleaned every day, but when paan spittle dries up, council sources say it is very difficult to remove from the pavements.

It requires a specialist cleaning team to use high pressure washing and even this only removes up to 90 per cent of the tougher stains. Council official say the last few years the amount of paan spewed on the streets of Wembley has increased “dramatically”.

Many people confuse the stains with dried blood and this contributes to an increased fear of crime, they say.

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