Pupils from Canning Street Primary kickstart the city's spring clean
Sarah Waddington

Member Article

Children kick-off Keep it Clean Newcastle’s springclean

School children in Newcastle have kicked off the city’s spring clean with a litter pick around their school in Elswick.

Pupils from Canning Street Primary, one of Newcastle City Council’s Enviro Schools, welcomed the arrival of spring by sprucing up their local area. It is hoped that this will be the start of more community activity across the city as part of Keep It Clean Newcastle.

Keep It Clean Newcastle was launched in January with a hard-hitting poster campaign to encourage people to put their litter in bins, clean up after their dogs and not fly-tip.

Supporting communities to take pride in their city and local neighbourhoods is at the heart of the initiative.

Across Newcastle there are already nearly 50 community groups and organisations of varying size who are doing their own activities to keep neighbours clean and tidy and it is hoped more will come on board over the next few months.

Cllr Hazel Stephenson, Cabinet Member for Communities, said:

Our Enviro Schools programme is committed to helping the city’s children and young people have an understanding of and make a real difference to their local environment.

“I am delighted that a number of schools have decided that they want to carry out litter picks which are key to our Keep It Clean campaign. It is great they want to do their bit to keep our city clean.

“If people didn’t drop litter and mess up our city this type of activity of course wouldn’t be needed in the first place. I hope by seeing these children giving up their time to clear up these people may stop them behaving like this in the future”.

Canning Street Primary is one of a number of Enviro Schools taking the lead in a drive to encourage a city-wide spring and summer clean in the city and Your Homes Newcastle has also organised a number of community clean-ups on estates.

Headteacher Heather Campbell, said:

“The school is very keen to get involved with local issues regarding the environment. We want to help look after the areas surrounding the school where the children may spend their free time or pass through on their way to school.

“That’s why Canning Street Primary School signed up to Enviro Schools.

“And we are keen to get involved in the Keep it Clean campaign. It is an excellent way of involving communities and keeping the city clean”.

Keep it Clean Newcastle is about educating people of all ages to champion cleanliness within their city, starting with their own communities.

The council is supporting groups that want to organise their own Keep it Clean actions and events with help and advice. Some handy tips on how to start are available at www.newcastle.gov.uk/keepitclean.

Newcastle City Council will spend approximately £4.2 million this year cleaning up after dogs, dropped litter and fly-tippers, but due to budget cuts it can no longer afford to do this.

In addition to encouraging communities to take pride in their neighbourhoods and environment, the council is taking enforcement action.

In Newcastle last year 204 prosecutions were brought for waste offences, the highest out of all of the England’s eight biggest cities outside London. 2,231 fixed penalty notices of £75 were issued for littering and dog-fouling with 529 people prosecuted.

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Sarah Waddington .

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