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Barringtons team wins 2018 Great Cotswolds Clean-up competition


May 29, 2018 Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Google+ May 2018 Cotswold News


A group comprising almost 40 environmentally-conscious residents from the Barringtons has won the £500 first prize in Cotswold District Council’s 2018 Great Cotswolds Clean-up competition.  A runners-up prize of £300 has been awarded to a team from Coln Valley while the third prize of £200 goes to Bourton-on-the-Water Primary School.

Judges from the Council reviewed the efforts of the volunteer litter picker groups who signed up for the competition and – after drawing up a shortlist of six contenders – they visited each site and met the organisers to discuss their projects in more detail.

The standard was excellent but the unanimous choice for the first prize was a team from the Barringtons, led by Jan de Haldevang and drawn from local families, estate workers, and even weekend visitors.  The event was very well publicised and the organisers created a real party atmosphere to lighten the task, helping to build new social ties across the community. The judges were impressed by efforts to make the day an enjoyable experience, including a preparatory hearty breakfast which was served at the Fox Inn, Great Barrington.  Working together, the participants filled 30 large sacks with rubbish and recycled over 100 cans that they found along roadsides.  They also uncovered a wide range of dumped items such as car tyres, an iron sheet and an old mattress.

The judges were also very impressed with the second placed entry – a 23-strong Coln Valley team drawn from local families and organised by David Blezard.  They have been gradually extending the area they cover and this year they collected a record 26 large bags of rubbish in the parishes of Coln St. Dennis and Winson.   An entry from Bourton-on-the-Water Primary School was also a worthy third prize winner, and involved almost 80 children – accompanied by several teachers and relatives – collecting litter along principal routes to the school.

Commendations were also given to the other three short-listed entrants: Ampney Crucis, Down Ampney and Bourton-on-the-Water Parish Council.

Commenting on the results, Cllr Sue Coakley, Cabinet Member for the Environment at CDC and head of the judging panel, said:

“All the teams who entered this competition deserve a huge ‘well done’  for their efforts – it makes a real difference when communities come together and carry out litter picks and other environmental improvements, and I know that many people are doing this on a regular basis throughout the year.

“At the Barringtons, the judging panel was particularly impressed by the way in which meticulously organised litter picking efforts had boosted community morale to the extent that many locals have now formed new friendships.  Quite a few residents also now carry a spare bag with them when they are out and about and tend to pick up stray bits of litter as a matter of course.  The Barringtons group will be using the prize money to procure more litter bins and will use the remainder to enhance the environment generally.

“The runners-up in the Coln Valley were also very well organised and efforts to involve a wide range of residents were particularly noteworthy.   The organisers attracted volunteers of all age groups and were full of ideas about cutting back on waste in future.  They will be spending their £300 prize money on litter picking equipment and special hoops to insert in waste  bags, making it easier to fill  them.

“Team members from third placed Bourton Primary are to be commended for their sheer enthusiasm.  The school  children clearly relished the challenge of litter picking and it was very encouraging to hear about their respect for the environment.   They will spend their £200 prize on litter bins and litter picking equipment.”

The Council ran the competition from 2 March to 29 April, incorporating the national ‘Keep Britain Tidy’ campaign which took place on the first weekend in March.

Most volunteers used equipment and bags supplied by the Council.  We can supply bags, pickers, gloves and high visibility jackets for clean-up work, and also arrange for special collections of filled bags after litter picks. Please call 01285 623123 if you require assistance with equipment or collection of filled bags.

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