Little litter heroes lead the way for Britain’s Spring Clean
Cleaning up after the grown-ups: Little litter heroes lead the way for Britain’s biggest ever Spring Clean
Litter-pickers and sacks in hand, an army of children yesterday took part in Britain’s biggest ever Spring Clean.
Hundreds of schools across the country have signed up to the Great British Spring Clean — and more than 100,000 children will take part over the next month in the drive to clean up our streets and green spaces.
Here are just some of the children and inspiring teachers taking part. They’ll make you want to join in too!
Schoolchildren and local residents joined the Great British Spring Clean in Woodcock Park, Kenton, Harrow, yesterday. The Great British Spring Clean has already had 484,214 people pledge their support
We’re going to make eco-bricks
Every child at Woodstock Primary School in Oxfordshire joined the litter pick along roads around the school. Their main focus was collecting crisp packets and they managed to find 34.
Teacher Kailey Alden said they plan to make ‘eco-bricks’ by stuffing large plastic bottles with plastic litter.
‘We managed to gather enough plastic rubbish today to make a start, and we hope to be able to build stools and tables with the bricks eventually,’ she added.
She said the children returned from their clean-up excited because it made the local environment safer for wildlife.
Pupils from Woodstock Primary School in Oxfordshire took part in the campaign by picking up litter. Teacher Kailey Alden said they plan to make ‘eco-bricks’ by stuffing large plastic bottles with plastic litter
A suspicious discovery…
When the children of Goldthorpe Primary in Barnsley saw a woodland trail choked with litter near their school, they were determined to clean it up.
As Year 4 pupil Alfie Owen said: ‘It’s important to pick up litter so wildlife has a better place to live. It’s helping us as well because it means we have a bigger area to enjoy ourselves.’
Yesterday the group of 11 nine-year-olds filled two dozen 50-litre bags to the brim in only half an hour. They discovered discarded mattresses, televisions and suitcases as well as crisp packets, beer cans and plastic bags.
A parent even unearthed a 6in kitchen knife wrapped inside a roll of carpet and a number of light bulbs used in the growing of cannabis.
Children from Goldthorpe Primary School, Barnsley, are pictured out litter picking today for the ‘Great British Spring Clean’. A parent even unearthed a 6in kitchen knife wrapped inside a roll of carpet
Saving London from plastic
The streets, the park – and even the front gardens of local residents. Not a scrap of litter escaped the children at St Luke’s Primary in Canning Town, East London.
Each year group spent 45 minutes picking litter, collecting an impressive 31 bags of rubbish including discarded cigarette packets, cans, food wrappers and even laughing gas canisters.
Soala Inko-Tariah, seven, said: ‘We can’t go one step without picking up rubbish, there’s so much. It’s not difficult for people to put it in the bin. I’ve picked up a lot of things. We need to do this so the whole city doesn’t turn into plastic.’
Not a scrap of litter escaped the children at St Luke’s Primary in Canning Town, East London. Each year group spent 45 minutes picking litter, collecting an impressive 31 bags of rubbish [File photo]
Children spread the message
All 300 pupils at Merchant Taylors’ Primary School in Crosby, Liverpool, took part in a litter pick, with teacher Sarah Curwen saying: ‘The children have been coming up to tell me every time they pick up a piece of litter now.
‘They have taken it really well so we will try to do it once a half-term to keep it as a habit in their heads and instil them to do the same outside the school.’
The litter pick was the latest of several environmental initiatives the school has participated in including Healthy Eating and Walk To School Week.
Mrs Curwen said campaigns such as the Great British Spring Clean are essential for sending the message across generations.
‘The children are often the ones who give the message to adults, often sometimes better than the adults can,’ she said. ‘Children take everything to heart and see the importance of the environment, so they pass on the message.’
Pupils from Merchant Taylors’ Primary School, Liverpool, Merseyside, pick litter in the grounds. Teacher Sarah Curwen said campaigns such as the Great British Spring Clean are essential for sending the message across generations
We found a chef’s hat!
It was chilly and grey, but nothing could dampen the spirits of children at Braywood School in Windsor as they embarked on a three-mile walk to clean up their town.
It began along a narrow path as the children dipped in and out of bushes, then Grace Ledger, eight, burst out of the shrubbery.
- Here we go! 461,000 litter heroes start tidying the UK TODAY… Choked by waste: A fridge, an old sofa and HUNDREDS of…
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Waving a litter-picker, she said: ‘I found a hat! It was really dirty … I think it’s a chef’s hat. I would be happy to wear that hat!’
Archie Humphries, seven, meanwhile was ecstatic to find a discarded piece of a Land Rover lying in a hedge, while Betsy Perkins, eight, emerged from a hedge waving a large plastic pole.
Pupils at Braywood School in Windsor embarked on a three-mile walk to clean up their town
Seven bags full in 15 minutes
Pupils at Avon House Preparatory School in Woodford Green, East London, were shocked at the amount of litter they collected.
Year 6 pupil Jack said: ‘We collected over 92 crisp packets, and the number of plastic bottles was disgraceful. As the head of Eco Council at my school, I would urge all parents, children and everyone in the UK to please take their rubbish home with them to put in their recycling bins. It’s a small effort that could make a big difference to the environment us kids are growing up in.’
Year 5 pupil Safa said: ‘I was shocked at how much rubbish we collected – in just 15 minutes we had over seven bin bags full.’
Pupils at Avon House Preparatory School in Woodford Green, East London, were shocked at the amount of litter they collected
Keeping the community green
Gemma Jordan, a teacher at West Jesmond Primary School in Newcastle, took five pupils aged six to nine out to litter pick.
West Jesmond has just been awarded its fourth green flag as part of Keep Britain Tidy’s Eco Schools initiative and regular litter picks are a major part of their environmental contribution.
Miss Jordan said: ‘It’s something we do quite regularly around the school and something that they really enjoy. We do huge numbers of different eco things and classes have “eco reps” from Year 1, so we have really tried to embed it in the curriculum.
‘The Great British Spring Clean campaign has let the children appreciate being able to improve their local community and have a positive effect on it.’
School children from the Eco Group of West Jesmond Primary School in Newcastle were out in Jesmond picking up litter yesterday as part of the campaign. West Jesmond has just been awarded its fourth green flag as part of Keep Britain Tidy’s Eco Schools initiative
From bottles and cans to a hubcap
Juice bottles, metal cans, discarded plastic bags and cigarette ends were among the junk unearthed by eager children from Glenbervie Primary School in Drumlithie, Aberdeenshire.
But the ‘piece de resistance’ was a plastic hubcap from an old Vauxhall that was then carried round the village like a trophy.
After just an hour the pupils aged from five to ten had filled half a dozen full-size bin bags with discarded rubbish.
In Aberdeen, Scotland, Glenbervie Primary school pupils take part in the big litter clean up. The ‘piece de resistance’ was a plastic hubcap from an old Vauxhall that was then carried round the village like a trophy
Help from a favourite writer
Children at the Quilters Infant School in Billericay, Essex, were joined on their litter pick by children’s author Nick Butterworth, known for his popular books about Percy The Park Keeper.
The series encourages children to take an interest in and care for the natural world around them.
Eight pupils took part, filling bin bags with rubbish from a nearby park. Mr Butterworth, 72, said: ‘The campaign is fantastic and to see the children help like this is such a tonic. But now with recycling and things like that we find it’s the children who are pestering their parents about it. It’s brilliant – they are leading the way.’
Children at the Quilters Infant School in Billericay, Essex, were joined on their litter pick by children’s author Nick Butterworth, known for his popular books about Percy The Park Keeper
A quarter of a ton of rubbish!
One of the biggest turn-outs of the day was in Leicester, where 250 children from 33 schools gathered in a city park.
Some held hand-made banners, others waved litter-pickers and clutched bulging bags of rubbish, while they chanted: ‘Litter litter on the floor, we don’t want you any more!’
The children, aged from three to 18, have spent the past few weeks on regular litter-picks around their schools and local communities – collecting an astonishing quarter of a ton of rubbish.
They have been encouraged by chewing gum maker Wrigley’s, which donated £250 to each school to put towards litter picking equipment.
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