Since last autumn a small and determined group of residents in rural Winchester have been developing a new initiative to keep their local roads free of litter. It has been such a success that they have now launched the Litter Partnership in Winchester.
The Litter Partnership brings together local people, councils, schools, businesses and military personnel to tackle the scourge of litter. The brainchild of Tom Bristowe, a LitterHero Ambassador of Keep Britain Tidy, it is supported by Winchester City Council and Walking With The Wounded, the veterans’ charity. It is led by Staff Sergeant Peter Dyde, a member of the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers (REME), and works closely with idverde, Winchester’s street scene contractor.
It’s simple – a local person identifies a road or public space that he or she would like to keep clean – perhaps near their home, school or work – and gathers a small group of friends and neighbours willing to help. A Litter Captain, often a military figure, is assigned by the Litter Partnership to coordinate their plans with idverde to ensure their activities run smoothly and safely. Idverde then disposes of everything responsibly.
“It’s the right idea at the right time,” says Tom Bristowe. “Taking responsibility for our environment is a hot and important topic for us all. I particularly love that children want to contribute. The Pilgrims’ School is keen to join the partnership and some of our younger volunteers are putting their litter-picking activities towards their Duke of Edinburgh Award.”
Businesses are also joining the call to arms. Jon Athill, a local web designer, has donated his time to develop the Litter Partnership branding and website. Rude Health, the innovative food and drinks company, is donating products to volunteers; and the Brushmakers Arms in Upham is offering drinks “on the house” post village clean-ups! The group has also received free support from Fluid Design in Twyford and Copyman, the Winchester printing company.
So whether you are an individual, family, school, business or any other group, the Litter Partnership is urging you to get in touch. Perhaps you could join, start, sponsor or co-ordinate a clean-up? Perhaps your business could offer volunteers discounts on goods and services, or provide equipment or financial support? All ideas are welcome.
For more information or to get in contact please visit www.thelitterpartnership.org