LITTER louts have been slammed by business owners after rubbish was left strewn along Weymouth Harbourside following a busy bank holiday weekend.

Plastic bags, empty beer bottles, pizza boxes and cans were among the piles of litter which were left dumped along the harbourside over the weekend, which saw huge crowds gather at the quayside to socialise.

Owners of businesses which operate on the harbourside have hit out at the 'disgusting people' who abandoned their rubbish and left the streets in a tip which their customers were forced to look at while they dined.

There have been problems of anti-social behaviour at the harbour in recent weeks, with complaints of street urination and drunken brawls as large crowds gather. There were particular problems over the Easter weekend.

Now the problem of litter has been highlighted following the bank holiday weekend.

Keith Treggiden, manager of The Anchor on Custom House Quay, said: "The litter is absolutely appalling. We make sure to tell our customers that it is nothing to do with us but it's not great when customers are sat looking out onto the picturesque harbour and there is a load of rubbish right in front of them.

Dorset Echo: Rubbish left at Weymouth Harbour Picture: Sarah BodnickRubbish left at Weymouth Harbour Picture: Sarah Bodnick

"I hear people's general comments when they are sat looking at it, saying it is 'appalling' and that 'Weymouth has gone downhill' which isn't great.

"The people who are littering need to have more respect for their local area. The fact that some people feel that this is an acceptable way to be living is disgusting."

A spokesman for The George Bar and Grill said: "We are as unhappy as the rest of the town about the litter situation. Our staff were having to clean up after the mess that was being left by people. It was not our situation to be dealing with but we had to."

Sarah Bodnick, landlady at The Red Lion in Hope Square, noticed piles of rubbish on her way home from work late on Sunday night. She said she also heard bottles being smashed at the harbour wall.

She added: "People can be utterly disgusting."

Dorset councillor Louie O'Leary thinks there needs to be a greater police presence to deter people from littering.

He said: "We have rules in place which tell people that they shouldn't be littering but the fact is it isn't enforced. Littering needs to be policed more and those people that get caught need to be made an example of to try and stop others from doing the same.

"I have spoken to fishermen who had their boats covered in litter and they are extremely annoyed. Some of them have been there for 40 or 50 years and are just trying to go to work and yet they come down to their boats and they are covered with bottles and cans.

"I am hoping that this will calm down when the pubs and restaurants fully reopen in a couple of weeks and people have somewhere to go so they won't need to hang around on the harbourside in order to socialise."