MIDDLESBROUGH Council's Clean Sweep campaign has been hailed as a resounding success after a marked drop in complaints from residents.

Streetscene operators have been clamping down on people who illegally dump rubbish in the town's back alleys.

Working in residential areas that have communal rear lanes for 16,000 homes, the staff keep an eye on dumped rubbish.

On a weekly basis, rubbish is collected and the alleys are swept, as well as being monitored by enforcement patrols who are targeting waste dumped on the wrong day.

Councillor Bob Kerr, executive member for environment, said: "Complaints have consistently dropped, month on month, and are now running at around 50 per cent of the April figure.

"This is excellent news. The statistics provide more evidence of the success of the scheme. Although it is early days, the signs are good."

Legal notices have been served on three town centre residents after patrolling enforcement officers found rubbish dumped by them in a back alley.

The notices prohibit residents from putting certain types of rubbish, such as rubble and electrical goods, in their refuse sacks.

They also require the rubbish to be put out at the proper times only. Failure to comply with the notices could result in prosecution.