There's no doubt that the herring gull gets a bad press. Indeed, there was even a seagull summit in Dumfries last year to discuss the 'havoc' that these birds can cause. I kid you not. It's described here. The herring gull has become an 'urban menace'! Apparently, "The birds can become aggressive while competing for food scraps, don’t bother to throw away their own litter, and aren’t fussy about where they choose to defecate."
I submit that the birds themselves are not really to blame. But they definitely need better PR.
Dumfries and Galloway Council are looking at ways to combat the gull problem, including the use of falcons, see here.
Herring gulls are clever birds. Dumfries railway station has found a role for a least one of them (above). Today it was supplementing all the CCTV cameras, and trumpeted loudly to herald the arrival of my train to Carlisle.
One really has to wonder if it would be better if some companies were run by herring gulls. For example, they might have made a better job of the banking industry over the last few years.