asked Her Majesty's Government:
Whether they have made an assessment of the number of shopping trolleys and similar items of retail equipment in the stretch of the Connswater river that runs through the Connswater shopping centre in Belfast, and in the other designated parts of that river maintained by the Rivers Agency, downstream from the confluence loop at Beersbridge Road to the bridge at the Sydenham bypass; and whether they have any plans to remove the items.[HL6745]
The Connswater river in the vicinity of the Connswater shopping centre is a designated watercourse which is maintained by the Rivers Agency as necessary to ensure free flow.
While no precise assessment has been made of trolleys in the river, I can confirm that it is subject to annual inspection and maintenance or more frequently in response to complaints about accumulation of debris.
Any dumped items, including shopping trolleys, which are likely to obstruct flows are routinely removed by the agency. Maintenance was last undertaken in March 2006 and further inspection, with any necessary maintenance, is planned for August.