Community groups spring clean their neighbourhoods

Words and photo by Dave Barry 

What a difference three weeks makes.

When the country was poised for its national spring clean on 4 March, everything was covered by a blanket of snow.

Tidy Britain’s Great British Spring Clean had to be postponed until the numerous community groups could manage it.

“We had to put it off because we couldn’t see whatever litter may have been on the ground for the snow”, explained Jan Cleary of the Friends of Dead Road and Manor Road Cemetery.

But hard-working volunteers were out in force throughout the borough of Scarborough on Sunday, when the sun shone all day.

They donned gloves and high-vis jackets to spring clean their neighbourhoods.

Participants were asked to give as little as an hour to help the campaign.

Roger Burnett and Sheila Johnson of Scarborough Council’s community environment team coordinated the initiative.

Roger said he was delighted with “another great response” from volunteers who were all eager to get out into the spring sunshine and make their areas sparkle.

“We’ve had about 20 groups out over the borough, from Whitby to Reighton”, Roger said. “Some of the roadsides through the villages have been particularly bad”.

Roger and Sheila gave a conducted tour to the mayor and mayoress, Martin and Cherry Smith, who encouraged the enthusiastic volunteers.

They were in Whitby on Friday and Reighton and Scarborough. Cllr Smith praised everyone concerned. “We’ve traveled around the borough and seen what a difference the Friends groups make. All the community groups are doing fantastic work. It’s not just about picking litter either as many of them are planting bulbs and all sorts of other things to improve the environment. The transformation has been phenomenal”.