Bridgnorth litter picking group combats increase in lockdown rubbish

A litter picking club in Bridgnorth is going from strength to strength as more individuals take to cleaning the streets to combat the rise in rubbish throughout lockdown.

The surge in members comes after volunteers who regularly clean areas around the town raised concerns that the issue of litter was becoming "out of hand", and that the number of paid council staff to clean up had decreased over the years.

Since then, dozens of people have joined the Bridgnorth Litter Picking Club, which was given a new lease of life and coordinated by Councillor Julia Buckley via Whatsapp.

The group orchestrates litter pickers to ensure their work is not duplicated and also serves as a network where like-minded members of the community can report areas in particular need of attention.

Members of Bridgnorth Litter Picking Club

Group member Christine Stockdale said the past week had seen a "fantastic" effort from club members.

"I can't stand looking at rubbish littered everywhere, it makes my blood boil and I can't believe people can be so antisocial," she said.

"It's been a fantastic week as so many people have been picking up litter from young to old, as they do all year round, but this group has really got its teeth into the problem this week.

Jacob Molland, five, helps clean the streets of Bridgnorth

"The last time I went out I met two volunteers coming the other way. It just shows that people are out to make the town look better."

Councillor Buckley urged those considering joining the growing group of about 40 members to reach out.

Councillor Buckley said: "Different people are doing different things, so it's not a case of having to go out everyday and litter pick.

Rubbish gathered from the River Severn in Bridgnorth

"The club acts as a place where people can report fly tipping and graffiti to me so I can lodge it with the council, and also communicate with each other.

"Throughout lockdown, with many groups unable to meet, individuals were going out independently and picking up litter.

"They felt it was a tiring, thankless task, but now we have a thriving community where people can network and coordinate their amazing efforts in a Covid-secure way."

The amount of litter around Bridgnorth is growing, claim volunteers. Pictured is Cross Lane Head

Christine said more signage and bins could help combat the increasing amount of litter.

"I'm concerned that there's no education and no deterrent from littering," she said.

"The council need to meet us half way as I think we need more bins and signage telling people to take their litter home.

Nancy Brown collects rubbish at Dudmaston

"I'm sure it's the same minority dropping litter but it has definitely got worse with takeaways and alcohol bottles.

"Between us we've been picking up tins and bottles in their thousands."

To get involved with the group, contact Councillor Buckley on 07814408571 or juliabuckleylabour@gmail.com

Residents Helen Bevers and Liz Rochelle clean Salop Street

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