Would you like to get involved in a local litter pick or beach clean in Torbay and be part of the ‘Million Mile Mission’?

In the past 12 months, people have relied on the places close to home – the local park or beach – as somewhere to escape to, to exercise and to play.

Now, Torbay Council has pledged its support for Keep Britain Tidy’s annual campaign and is asking local residents to do their bit and clear up the litter that can blight these places as part of its Great British Spring Clean.

The campaign, which runs from 28 May – 13 June 2021, calls on the public to pledge to clean-up and help the charity achieve a million miles of litter-picking. If groups let us know in advance, SWISCo, which provides a range of frontline services for Torbay Council, can provide litter picking kits, and also collect the bags of rubbish at the end of each litter pick or beach clean. Please get in touch at engagement@torbay.gov.uk if you are planning a litter pick or beach clean. There is also COVID-19 guidance for those taking part on both the Keep Britain Tidy website and the government website.

Leader of Torbay Council Steve Darling said: “We’re delighted to join forces with Keep Britain Tidy and local partners such as SWISCo, Groundwork South, Tor Bay Harbour and a range of local community groups so that we can all do our bit to clean up the Bay.

“Over recent weeks I have been organising litter picks on the Willows, Babbacombe Downs and Hele Village. After the lockdown it has been a good way to build a sense of community and make a positive impact on our local environment. We all need to play our part in protecting Torbay”.

Darren Cowell, Deputy Leader of Torbay Council, said: “As a Council we are committed to improving our local area and over the summer we’ve recruited a team of Safe, Clean and Green Ambassadors to support local street cleansing services, but we all care about the Bay and can all play our part to protect our parks, beaches and open spaces.

“So if you want to get involved please let us know in advance, and our colleagues at SWISCo will be able to loan litter picking equipment and clear up any collected waste bags at the end.”

The Great British Spring Clean, now in its sixth year, brings together individuals, community organisations, businesses and councils to make a difference to the environment on our doorstep. In 2019, more than half a million #LitterHeroes collected just under a million bags of litter, weighing around 4,308 tons.

This year’s campaign comes as the charity has reported a massive increase in the number of people who have started litter-picking during the various lockdowns. It has seen the number of #LitterHeroes grow by a third in less than 12 months.

Keep Britain Tidy Chief Executive Allison Ogden-Newton said: “The Great British Spring Clean would not be possible without the support of local authorities, including Torbay Council

“We have all spent a lot more time in our local area in the past year and have come to realise just how important our local park or green space is for our mental and physical health.

“We need to care for these spaces and the Great British Spring Clean is an opportunity for everyone to take a small action that, collectively, can make a big difference.

“Whether you commit to do five minutes or five hours, every single pledge will help us reach our million-mile target and clear many tonnes of litter pollution from our environment.”

Find out more here

If you want to get involved in the Great British Spring Clean, please email engagement@torbay.gov.uk – if you are organising on behalf of a community group you will need a risk assessment and insurance.

If possible, please separate the litter you find into three bags so as much as possible can be recycled:

  1. Plastic bottles
  2. Aluminium cans
  3. General waste.

Remember to follow COVID guidance including always maintaining a two metre distance from those outside of your household bubble, and make sure you wash your hands well for at least 20 seconds after the litter pick or beach clean. Litter picking equipment will be cleaned between each event. From 17 May up to 30 people can participate in an event such as a litter pick or beach clean, but you would still need to maintain distance from those outside your household bubble.

Find out more on the Keep Britain Tidy website here.

National hashtags: #GBSpringClean #MillionMileMission Local hashtag: #TorbayLitterHeroes

Please let us know if you are planning a litter pick or beach clean and we will provide you with litter picking kit, collect the bags, and also help you publicise your event. You can get in touch by emailing engagement@torbay.gov.uk

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