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Grab your gloves and litter pickers for the great British spring clean

Published: Friday, 28th May 2021

Residents across Stoke-on-Trent are being invited to grab a pair of gloves and a litter picker this spring and join in with the country’s biggest mass-action environmental campaign.

Stoke-on-Trent City Council is backing this year’s Great British Spring Clean, which is running from today (Friday 28 May) to 13 June 2021.

Led by Keep Britain Tidy, the initiative encourages local communities to tackle litter in their areas. Now in its sixth year, the campaign aims to top the success of the 2019 event when more than half a million ‘litter heroes’ collected nearly a million bags of litter – equating to 4,308 tons – that would have otherwise remained on streets and in parks across the country.

The council will continue to lend its support by providing litter pickers and bin bags, as well as arranging for the waste to be collected from agreed locations.

Councillor Carl Edwards, cabinet member for housing and environment said: “We already have a fantastic network of people and groups across the city who regularly go out to collect litter. Now to mark the Great British Spring Clean Week, we’d like as many people as possible to get involved.”

“It’s appalling that some people think it is acceptable to throw their rubbish wherever they like, with no thought for their fellow residents or the environment, and I’m so grateful to those who take pride in where they live and do their best to keep everywhere tidy.

“This spring we will all want to get out and enjoy our local parks and countryside. The last year has demonstrated the importance of green spaces for our physical and mental wellbeing. But we need to take action to tackle the blight of litter which spoils the environment and damages wildlife.”

A recent litter pick in the Scotia Valley area saw a team of volunteers collect over 32 bags of waste from the site, plus larger items that were too large for bin bags. 

Middleport Matters Community Trust also carries out litter picks every two weeks, rotating between Longport, Middleport and Dale Hall. Since August 2020, they have carried out 11 organised litter picks involving 73 participants which includes 40 local residents. In that time they have collected 103 bags of rubbish. They have a number of volunteers who are environment champions, and they work hard to support the local community in keeping it clean and tidy.

Residents or community groups who wish to help out with the drive to clean up Stoke-on-Trent by carrying out a litter pick in their local area can email environmentalclient@stoke.gov.uk and the city council can provide litter pickers and council branded litter bags.