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Great British September Clean

We’re supporting the Great British September Clean to clear up fly-tipping around the railway and raise awareness of how dangerous and disruptive it can be.

Fly-tipping and litter are unsightly and cause safety issues and delays to your journeys.


  • Litter can attract rats that can chew on cables. This leads to failures in our signalling system, which tells trains if it safe to proceed. It also causes delays and can cause accidents.
  • Metal cans and foil on the tracks can cause short circuits in the signalling system.
  • If people trespass to fly-tip, we must stop all trains in the area to keep everyone safe.

We work hard alongside British Transport Police to prevent litter and fly-tipping on the railway and investigate offenders. Where possible, they’re prosecuted.

It’s a criminal offence too and carries a fine of up to £1,000.

But we still receive about 700 to 800 reports and requests to clear fly-tipping – all at taxpayers’ expense.

This month, we’re helping The Daily Mail and charity Keep Britain Tidy promote clean-ups all over the country. We’re encouraging you and our staff to get involved in litter picking events locally.

How we tackle litter

We have a statutory duty to clean up any litter on our land. We’ll always act quickly to remove litter that could affect safety. For example, we would immediately remove a shopping trolley left on the tracks.

There are regular, scheduled clean-ups in stations and 100 metres either side within our boundary. Beyond stations, we do litter clearing as and when we identify a problem.

We clean all our lines and clear up the busiest ones, such as popular commuter routes, more frequently than quieter ones.

Read more about litter and fly-tipping and how to report it here.

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