COUNCIL bosses could scrap the use of “no nonsense” private wardens who have been dolling out fines to litter louts after the first three months of a trial cost the authority thousands of pounds.

Basildon Council launched a one-year pilot of using four wardens from Xfor to dish out £75 fixed penalty fines to people dropping litter, cigarette butts and caught dog fouling.

The firm, which uses ex soldier and police officers as wardens and prides itself on getting litter bugs to change their ways, was supposed to come at no cost to the council.

However, a review of the first three months from April to July has show a £17,450 cost to the council and they now want to explore a “cost neutral” system.

See Wednesday's Echo for the full story.