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The Sticky Issue of Chewing Gum in Cheltenham

Cheltenham Borough Council recently had to deal with a notoriously sticky issue – chewing gum. The town's pavements and walkways were becoming increasingly blighted by blobs of unsightly, hazardous discarded gum and the council needed a cost efficient solution to the problem. We bid for the project to clean up Cheltenham’s pavements and are delighted to have been awarded the contract.


Originally designed as a spa resort for wealthy visitors in the 18th and 19th centuries, Cheltenham remains an extremely popular high-end tourist destination. It is also home to a number of high profile festivals and the council was keen to clean up the pavements before the season got into full swing.

We knew that our unique steam cleaning system would make really light work of the removing the gum; the mix of steam and pressure is a killer combination that is both efficient and effective. The steam lifts the gum off with ease, while being able to adjust the pressure ensures minimum damage, so the system can be safely used to clean a whole range of different substrates including; cement, block paving, tarmac and brick.


On this project the challenges were around timings - making sure that we caused an absolute minimum of interference to the town’s retailers, hoteliers, restauranteurs and bar owners.  Our initial testing showed that cleaning after 6.00pm when shoppers had finished shopping worked well for the retailers, but this was not so for the restaurant and bar owners whose trade continues late into the evenings. The answer - early evening cleaning sessions in the retail areas and then very early morning cleaning sessions for areas outside the bars and restaurants. Unfortunately, neither of these times worked for the main bus station, so we scheduled a separate cleaning session to be carried out at the quietest possible time on a Sunday. This eclectic combination takes account of everyone's needs and having less pedestrians around when we are working also allows us to get on with job. The project will run over several weeks and the council is impressed by the initial results.

As part of our bid we have agreed to assist Cheltenham Borough Council with a publicity drive to reduce the amount of gum that is deposited onto pavements. Whilst we can easily remove chewing gum, we also agree that it is unsightly and a blight on our pavements so are happy to add our support to the Council’s campaign. We are pleased with the results we have achieved so far and look forward to seeing the difference that the cleaning will make once the project has been fully completed. We will keep you updated on the project in our next blog.

For more information about our jet washing services contact Max or Andy Morris on 0333 234 1445 or email

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“As always OneFifty got the job done with no fuss. They’re our go-to supplier for exterior building cleaning.”

Mark Sheffield - Contracts Manager - Jones Building Group

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Anita Pitts - Hartwell House

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Lloyd - Lambert Smith Hampton

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Adam Coombs - Regional Director, Hillcrest

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Will Mellor - Knight Frank

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