Leaders Award 2019

KEEP TIDY GROUP RECOGNISED FOR THEIR GIGANTIC EFFORT

A group of residents who keep Blackburn tidy is to be recognised at a special celebration.

Keep Blackburn Tidy started as a Facebook group

Keep Blackburn Tidy will be this year’s recipient of the Council Leader Award created by community group One Voice Blackburn.

The award invites the public to nominate people that have promoted community cohesion through leadership. The winner is chosen by the leader of the Council and One Voice Blackburn.

This year the award will be presented by the Council’s chief executive Harry Catherall at One Voice’s annual dinner in February.

Dozens of nominations were submitted for the award with the majority putting forward Keep Blackburn Tidy.

Keep Blackburn Tidy started as a Facebook page in May 2018 as a way to link volunteers who make the town cleaner and greener together. Original admins Heidi Pugh and Tracey Padia both litter picked when out with their children but quickly realised that more people needed to be enlisted to do their bit to make a real impact.

The page has now 1,300 members and the volunteers of the group collect, on average, about 245 bags of rubbish a week.

Councillor Jackie Floyd, one of the admins of the group and herself keen litter picker, said she was delighted the group had been recognised for their hard work.

“It’s been amazing how quickly the group has grown and how many members we have actually making a difference.

“The group is a way to keep volunteers in touch, support and encourage each other. It is also a way of helping people realise that looking after our streets is something anyone can do. It’s a way of uniting people around one common goal that has the added impact of growing community cohesion.

“We are pretty shocked that our group has caught the attention of so many people and are proud to be part of what is becoming a real force for change in Blackburn.

“This award is recognition for all our amazing volunteers who have contributed to the growing momentum of the group.”

Councillor Mohammed Khan, leader of the Council, said: “I am delighted Keep Blackburn Tidy are being recognised for their efforts. Our borough is blessed with two fantastic Keep Tidy groups, this one and the one in Darwen. Our borough would be a worse place without them.

“But the Keep Tidy groups are not just about litter though. They are bringing people and communities together around the goal of loving where you live and being proud of your town.”