‘It was an eyesore before’ - Town’s coronavirus ‘litter hit squad’ has funding renewed
- Credit: James Bass
A seaside town’s “litter hit squad” has had its funding renewed after delighted communities showered the pickers with bacon butties and cups of tea as a thank you.
At a meeting of Great Yarmouth Borough Council’s environment committee on November 4, chairman Penny Carpenter applauded the squad, which was initially set up in August to keep areas with high footfall clean during the pandemic.
Council officer Chris Silverwood said: “In August, we received funding from Norfolk County Council for Covid-related high-street clean up costs. We used this to fund our great little ‘litter hit squad’.
“Funding was due to stop at the end of October, but will now carry on until January 9.
“They are dressed in bright orange, and are out using the electric sweeper.
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“They’ve spent time in the Rows, the Fuller Subway, Gapton Hall, the Nelson Ward, Bradwell, Winterton, Hemsby, Gorleston and more. They are really making a difference.”
Officer James Wilson said there was “much more waste” to deal with as a result of lockdown, including a huge increase in takeaway boxes - and that efforts were being made to improve the recycling of takeaway materials.
But councillor Donna Hammond said it seemed more people were willing to take responsibility for the area they live because of the “highly noticeable” squad.
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She said: “I was out with the hit squad when they covered Sturdee Avenue, and they did a fantastic job. It seemed to encourage more people to respect the environment.”
Carl Annison, councillor for Bradwell South and Hopton, said the passageway running through Bradwell had been an “absolute eyesore” before the hit squad came along.
“Residents every single year contact me saying it’s a total mess. I even remember it being a tip as a child,” he said.
“But I have been and looked down there since you guys came along and you did a fantastic job.”
Kerry Robinson-Payne, councillor for the Nelson Ward, said residents down by the Barracks were so impressed with the squad’s work they offered the team bacon butties and hot drinks.
“We’ve been forgotten over the years down in that spot, and your work was really appreciated,” she said.