DOZENS of villages have been stopped from having a spring clean in case people pick up litter containing the deadly nerve agent Novichok.
The ban — across parts of South Wiltshire — follows the poisoning of ex- spy Sergei Skripal, 67, and daughter Yulia, 34, in Salisbury last April.
Rex Features Ex-spy Sergei Skripal and daughter Yulia were targeted in April 2018
Tory Wiltshire councillor Richard Britton had told locals in several villages they could arrange community litter picks.
But hours later he was told by Wiltshire council to stop them on Public Health England’s advice.
The council is looking to stage its own litter picks in every village.
Mr Britton said he felt locals should be allowed to make their own choice.
“On the ground people like me thinks this is such a minor consideration it is a matter for the judgement for the individuals in these villages.
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“The communities are frustrated by it. It is all good fun. The most important consideration for me was these events in villages do tend to be community events.
“My suggestion is if they wanted to do it it is up to them.
“It seems to me the risk is so small and I think everybody acknowledges that.”
Councillor Richard Britton had told locals in several villages they could arrange community litter picks
PA:Press Association The litter ban is across parts of South Wiltshire after a nerve agent attack last year
Salisbury police officer Nick Bailey who was poisoned in novichok attack speaks for the first time