‘Start simple’ MP urges as he joins our fight against Hitchin’s litter

PUBLISHED: 11:16 28 September 2020 | UPDATED: 11:16 28 September 2020

The Comet's final litter pick for September, as part of Hitchin Hates Litter. Picture: Supplied

The Comet's final litter pick for September, as part of Hitchin Hates Litter. Picture: Supplied


We wrapped up September with the last of our weekly litter picks, as we were joined by Bim Afolami MP, among others, for our final weekly outing.

Molly, from Earth Guardians Stevenage, joined in our final weekly pick for September. Picture: SuppliedMolly, from Earth Guardians Stevenage, joined in our final weekly pick for September. Picture: Supplied

Each week myself and five other volunteers have headed up to Hitchin’s Windmill Hill and picked litter for about an hour.

It comes as no surprise that each week we returned, there would still be work for us to do – with takeaway boxes, plastic bags, disgarded pint glasses, and even condoms being found in and around the hill.

This week, I was joined by Bim Afolami, MP for Hitchin and Harpenden, Tommie Eaton from @BambuuBrush, Bill Sellicks of Hitchin Forum and Rhiannon and Molly, who founded Earth Guardians UK Stevenage.

Collectively, we filled seven bags with litter – weighing more than 17 kilograms in total.

Mr Afolami, who is supporting our Hitchin Hates Litter campaign, said: “It was great to be out in Hitchin, supporting the Comet’s Hitchin Hates Litter campaign.

“This is my third litter pick on Windmill Hill in the last year. In my experience, it has always been the same type of litter, in the same spots, probably coming from the same people. It’s disappointing to see.

“The environment is so important and we hear a lot about climate change, but we need to think about what we can do to help our own environment locally – in places like Windmill Hill.

“If we all started simple and looked after our own green spaces, imagine the world we would be living in.”

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Tommie, who has helped deliver 20 community clean-ups in and around Hitchin, pleaded with litterers to make better decisions.

He said: “People in Hitchin might be surprised by the amount of plastic and litter in their local town if they joined a clean-up.

“I think if we all understood the impact litter is having on our local community then we would start making changes and taking action to fight it.

“We need to think global, but act local – with people taking action in their own communities.”

Bill Sellicks has organised many litter picks as part of Hitchin Forum in the past, but last week was his first, eye-opening venture into problems in the Dell.

The Forum had to cancel its Big Hitchin Spring Clean event in March, but is planning to host a community clean-up next month.

Bill said: “It’s great that the Comet has been organising small groups over the last few weeks to help keep on top of things.

“It isn’t unusual now to see people armed with litter pickers doing their bit to keep the town as tidy as possible – it’s clear that Hitchin is a community that cares about its environment.”
Although our weekly Hitchin Hates Litter picks are now over, we are encouraging those interested to join Hitchin Forum’s October clean up, which will be held on Sunday, October 18.

Social distancing measures will be in place, and separate teams of up to six people will be litter picking various spots in Hitchin on the day.

Please contact Bill at hflitterpick@gmail.com to register your interest.

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