The survey of the community carried out in 2008/2009 when the Council was set up identified environmental issues among the top priorities. The issues included litter, dog fouling, fly tipping, poor drainage, poor maintenance of grassed areas and park land, inadequate or non-existent bus shelters, lack of benches and a lack of flower beds.

As a result, the Council entered into a five year contract with Durham County Council in 2010 to provide five Neighbourhood Wardens and two Environmental Caretakers. Two years later a contract was arranged with Groundwork North East and Cumbria to provide three additional Caretakers.

The role of these officers was to address the issues identified in the survey, including the ability of the Wardens to issue penalty notices.