Colchester: Businesses support anti litter campaign

COMMUNITY-focused businesses have thrown their weight behind a drive to keep litter from Colchester’s streets.

Business groups, shopping centres and civic chiefs have backed the Love Where You Live campaign, which is being launched on the steps of Colchester Town Hall today.

If the month-long pilot scheme – brought to Colchester by Paul Bentham, manager of Lion Walk Shopping Centre – proves a success it could be rolled out to 800 shopping centres across Britain.

The campaign will see advertising, eye-catching posters and stickers distributed to encourage townsfolk to keep Colchester tidy.

Schools and community, voluntary and charitable groups will hold street cleans in July while a team from Colchester Borough Council will monitor overall progress with regular inspections.

The drive has received widespread backing, including Colchester Retail and Business Association (CoRBA), which represents two-thirds of the town’s retailers.

Michelle Reynolds, its chairman, said: “We are delighted to support and join the Love Where You Live campaign.

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“We are promoting this to our members, and smaller shops and businesses, and generally raising awareness.

“We are encouraging businesses to ‘adopt’ the outside of their premises and keep their general areas clean and tidy. We are also asking them to respect their nominated times for waste collections so that rubbish doesn’t sit on the street longer than it needs to.

“I am certain that if we all work together we will make a real difference.”

Mr Bentham said he first heard about the campaign when he was regional chairman of the British Council of Shopping Centres (BCSC) and felt it was “perfect” for Colchester.

He added: “I am delighted so many of the town’s retailers, Culver Square and Colchester Borough Council are backing the scheme. Together we will ensure Colchester is somewhere we can all be proud of, not just in the week the Olympic torch visits our town, all the time.”

Councillor Martin Hunt, portfolio holder for street and waste services at Colchester Borough Council, said: “The council’s teams are already working hard with local communities across the borough to make Colchester a litter-free town.

“Our work to deliver education will hopefully increase people’s respect and pride in their town.

“We are pleased that local businesses and other partners wish to work with us to make Colchester a place people want to live, work, learn and visit and will support them in any way we can.”

Phil Barton, chief executive of Keep Britain Tidy, said: “We wish everyone involved the best of luck and encourage all Colchester residents to get behind the campaign.”

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