How to resolve the problem of abandoned supermarket trolleys

Abandoned supermarket trolleys are a particular problem in rural areas, with lazy shoppers often not bothering to return them. This really is a scourge on our society, as abandoned trolleys can have a detrimental impact on the environment and be a hazard for pedestrians, drivers and wildlife. Thankfully, there are ways to tackle this growing problem.

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There are ways of dealing with abandoned supermarket trolleys and the good news is that councils can remove shopping trolleys left on their land, but this does not apply in certain cases; for example, trolleys cannot be removed from land owned by the trolley owner, such as the supermarket. They also cannot be removed from places where luggage trolleys are provided or from facilities for shoppers to leave their groceries, perhaps while they visit the cafe.

Removing trolleys from private land

Before removing trolleys from private land, permission must be obtained from the landowner. If they fail to give you permission, you can issue a notice of intention to remove the trolley. If the landowner does not object to this, the trolley can be removed 14 days after the notice is served.

Supermarket trolleys come in various shapes and sizes and are available from specialists such as

According to the Daily Mail, a mother has come up with a novel way to keep her children entertained during shopping trips using a tray, pegs and the supermarket trolley.

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Identifying the trolley owner

If the trolley owner can be identified, the person who wants to claim the trolley must provide notice. The notice must outline the fact that they intend to keep the trolley, its location, and the possibility of disposal upon non-reclamation. The trolley must be returned to the owner if they claim it.

Trolleys must be kept for six weeks after their removal. If the person who finds the trolley can demonstrate that they have tried to find the owner and no one has come forward, it is perfectly acceptable to dispose of the item.

An app has been developed to enable people to report an abandoned trolley. The person can report the location of the trolley, the supermarket it originated from, and the number of trolleys. Supermarket trolleys are often found abandoned in groups of two or three.

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