SALFORD volunteers set out in the miserable weather to clean up Albert Park.

Over the past weekend, more than 59,000 Britons volunteered in the Great British Spring Clean. Equipped with rubbish bags and gloves, they did not stop until their streets were clean and ready for a new season.

Salford saw its own residents volunteer across the main streets and along the beautiful and historic River Irwell. On Sunday, in spite of the rain and the cold temperatures, five Salford residents with a love for their environment were busy cleaning up Albert Park.

Carole Sumner, chair of Friends of Albert Park committee
Carole Sumner, chair of Friends of Albert Park committee

Carole Sumner, the leader of this volunteer group and chair of Friends of Albert Park committee, was proud to participate in this event. “The council has fewer maintenance staff, so they do not clean the park like they used to, not even with machinery. So it is up to volunteers to do this, to make an effort.

“Ideally it should be a monthly event but we do not have enough members interested in this.”

Compared to last year’s event, Carole says there were fewer volunteers but at least “different people than last year.”

Jacqui, also a member of the Friends of Albert Park committee, is no stranger to picking up litter from the park as she has been doing it for quite some time.

She said: “I do not like untidiness and dirtiness, so it is important that we do this. It makes me feel good to do this because I live right across the street from here. I always pick the rubbish up when I come here with my grandchildren.

Listen to more of what Jacqui had to say:


Jacqui, member of Friends of Albert Park committee
Jacqui, member of Friends of Albert Park committee

“We do not have enough bins on the streets because they say there is no money, but what is more important than hygiene?”

As part of her committee work, Jacqui has visited enough countries around the world to reach a somber conclusion about the United Kingdom.

“Our country is the dirtiest. In some parts of Cambodia, you could eat off the street.”

“Employing people to clean is the answer. Cleaning vehicles are not good because they always leave some rubbish behind. Instead of vehicles, money could be spent on hiring people to clean. It would make a big difference, not only for our community but for the workers as well. Then maybe if Salford residents saw an initiative like that, they would think twice about throwing their litter on the ground.”

Councillor Jim King also participated in Sunday’s cleaning.

He said: “I became involved because I am a keen environmentalist.”

Cllr. King  was impressed by the volunteers’ efforts and said: “Ideally it should happen more than once a year and be organised organically by the Salford community with the City Council providing bags and gloves.”

Volunteeres cleaning Salford’s streets
Volunteers cleaning Salford streets

The council is making its contribution by providing seven new Streetscene vehicles costing £245,000, to clean streets and parks. A further £300,000 will be used to employ extra cleaning staff.

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