Bishopsgate gets blast-proof bins 20 years after IRA explosion

Councillor Tom Sleigh
Image caption In the event of an attack the bins are designed to explode upwards

Blast resistant litter bins have been introduced in London's Bishopsgate 20 years after they were removed following an IRA attack.

More than 2,000 bins were cleared from the Square Mile after a truck bomb killed one person and injured 44.

This weekend 20 new blast-proof bins are being introduced on a trial basis after complaints about litter.

Bishopsgate councillor Tom Sleigh said it showed the City had "responded quickly" to local concerns.

Mr Sleigh, who has campaigned for the return of the bins, said litter was particularly bad at the weekends.

'Special location'

"The City is no longer Monday to Friday 9am-5pm," he said.

"People come to Spitalfields, Shoreditch and Brick Lane at weekends too, and as a local I see the increasing problem with litter, and people complain to me about it."

Mr Sleigh said the new heavy round bins are designed so should anything happen they explode upwards instead of outwards, causing less damage.

The introduction follows two weeks of pre-trial inspections. The City of London said while it has had a general policy of not providing general litter bins since 2008 it has been recognised that limited provision in particular litter hotspots could help resolve the problem.

'Security considerations'

A spokesperson for the City of London police said: "Currently there is nothing to suggest that bringing the bins back would make the City more vulnerable."

Experts say the terror attack in 1993, in which nearby buildings were damaged by the shockwaves, marked a turning point in how security was dealt with in the capital,

According to the City of London Corporation, there is currently a "very sparse" scattering of 39 bins in random locations, such as parks, across the City.

However, the trial marks the first "street of bins" since the IRA attack, increasing the number of bins in the area by 50%.

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