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Vandals throwing shopping trolleys in Newry's Clanrye river are literally throwing away a fortune in pound coins,

according to Newry councillor Frank Feely.

While dumping trolleys into the water way has been a scourge on the city for a number of years, Mr Feely said the problem has been exacerbated by the recent influx of cross-border shoppers abandoning trolleys in car parks across the city.

In recent week's almost 100 trolleys have been dumped into the river, at least two dozen trolleys now lie in a pile beside Newry bus-centre alone.

Mr Feely said the trolleys were being abandoned in car parks across the city by cross border shoppers who couldn't find parking closer to the city's supermarkets.

"It's not their fault," he insisted. "Shoppers from the republic are being forced to park further and further from both the Quays and Cornmarket," he said. "They are buying so many items they end up having to push their trolleys across the city to their cars.

"They are not going to walk all the way back to the stores with an empty trolley so they are left in the car parks for young vandals to throw over the wall," he said.

The SDLP representative said that as most trolleys still contain a pound coin, young people were literally throwing hundreds of pounds away.

"At a time when people are facing hardship, it is a terrible waste," he said. "It is time supermarkets who provide trolleys at their stores took action to prevent this from happening."

"With all the money supermarkets are making, these stores could afford to hire a young person to go around and collect the trolleys." He suggested the use of technology in use in other area which jams trolley wheels when they leave the vicinity of the store.

"If they fail to act some enterprising people could even make a living from returning trolleys for the money they contain," he said.

"In any case this problem needs action and I will be bringing it up with both the council and the Rivers Agency."

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