London Volunteer Litter Clean Up Kicks-Off
10 June 2011
An army of up to 2,000 volunteers are expected to remove 3,000 black bin bags of litter, six skips of fly-tipped rubbish and 10,000 metres of graffiti from London’s streets in the next two months.
Capital Clean-Up, supported by the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson and run in partnership with London’s councils and Keep Britain Tidy, was kick-started today by Kulveer Ranger, the Mayor's Director of Environment in Lewisham. He was joined by school children, City Hall staff, firefighters from London Fire Brigade, Lewisham's cabinet member for customer services, council and local volunteers to help clear an alleyway which has been blighted by fly-tipping. They were helped out by a team of local firefighters who highlighted how to properly dispose of waste in an effort to drive down the number of rubbish fires in the capital, which reached more than 8,000 in 2010.
The campaign will run for six weeks and will see more than 100 litter clearing events take place across the capital in the weeks leading up to London 2012 Open Weekend (July 22nd to July 24th). Londoners are being invited to take part in many of the events or even set up their own clean up activities in local grime spots, information is available at www.london.gov.uk/capitalclean-up.
As part of a drive to show off the capital at its best ahead of 2012, Capital Clean-Up will also result in 900 hours of Community Payback (unpaid work undertaken by offenders) completed and restore about 6,000 square metres of habitat across the boroughs.
Capital Clean-Up supports Team London, the Mayor’s ambitious call to arms to get more people volunteering in the capital to make the capital a better place to live. Capital Clean-Up has also been granted the Inspire Mark the badge of the London 2012 Inspire Programme. The London 2012 Inspire programme recognises innovative and exceptional projects that are directly inspired by the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
The Mayor of London Boris Johnson said: ‘This year's Capital Clean-Up is a great show of people power. Over the coming weeks, an army of volunteers will roll up their sleeves to remove grime and litter, helping to make their neighbourhood a cleaner, greener, safer place to live. We can all do our bit to bring the village back into our city and Londoners can work with us to make a real difference to quality of life and London's image ahead of the 2012 Games.'
Kulveer Ranger, the Mayor’s Environment Director said: "I am delighted to roll up my sleeves and help kick-start this series of clean up events. Abandoned rubbish and fly-tipping blights communities and can ruin much needed public space. It is fantastic that so many people are already working together in this way and if you and your friends feel inclined to get involved it's simple to log on and find out how.”
Phil Barton, chief executive of Keep Britain Tidy, said: “Run-down, littered areas cost us money and lead to an increased fear of crime. This campaign shows that Londoners really love where they live and are prepared to do something to make a difference to the environment and their community.”
Susan Hall, Chairman of London Fire Authority’s Community Safety Committee, said: "Rubbish that is dumped or left lying around is a fire waiting to happen. We’ve worked hard to bring the number down, but there were still over 8000 rubbish fires across the capital last year. Rubbish fires can easily spread, posing risk to homes, buildings and people’s lives. That’s why we’re supporting the Capital Clean-Up and will be launching our Fires are Rubbish campaign this year to raise awareness and reduce the number of rubbish fires further.”
Councillor Susan Wise, Lewisham's Cabinet Member for Customer Services, said: "Lewisham welcomes the launch of this year's Capital Clean-Up. Lewisham has much to offer the capital by way of experience and expertise. It has introduced innovative and creative methods to deal with litter and fly-tipping. The LoveLewisham campaign which began in 2005 and progressed to LoveCleanStreets has since been adopted by the Mayor of London's office as LoveCleanLondon and has made a real difference to the environment and won the borough national acclaim."