Picture of the Day - Millenial Waste - 2014

Millenial Waste Paper Basket - Great Yarmouth 2014
Millenial Waste Paper Basket - Great Yarmouth 2014

Today's picture was taken in 2014 during a visit to Great Yarmouth. It  depicts a fine example of the Millenial Waste Paper Basket Scheme of the  late 1990s. Since then, I have endevoured to document these post  industrial premillenial relics of well spent public funds during my  travels around the UK.

Set up as part of Tony Blair's New Labour's Millenial celebrations  schemes, those that gave us excellent value for money public investments  such as the Millenium Dome, the Millenial Waste Paper Basket scheme was  a joint enterprise between artisian metal workers, bearded artists and  sandaled environmentalists. The baskets were sited in various locations -  mostly parks, elevated places and coastal regions - with the intention  to encourage the public to throw away their waste food wrappers in handy  recepticals which would then be ritually set on fire.

I believe the intention was to have them ignited on regular occasions  but, due to reallocation of funding to support the post 9/11 Iraq war  and ultimately withdrawal of funding by the Conservatives in 2010, they  have mostly remained dormant since their last ignition during the 2012  Olympic Games.

As you can see from this picture, there is not much waste paper in the  basket as the local seagulls frequently steal the chip wrappers to line  their nests but also, it was taken in 2014, nearly two years after its  last ignition. These days, the waste paper baskets have mostly fallen  into a state of disrepair and some, if not many, have been demolished,  their original purpose often forgotten. However some have been  inventively redesigned and reallocated into things as diverse as street  food vendors and luxury accomodation.


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