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Douglas Valley – it’s picking up!
Thursday 15th October, 2009

Douglas Valley – it’s picking up!
John Belshaw (centre left) and the Friends show off the bags of locals' rubbish.

Work to improve a popular route into the town centre has received a boost from eco-minded locals.

The Friends of Douglas Valley collected some 20 rubbish bags from the pathway between Great Acre and the Plantations through to the centre of Wigan which had become overrun with litter, graffiti and undergrowth.

The Friends and local residents brought in the council’s eco team, British Trust for Conservation Volunteers, the Probation Team and Tescos. As well as clearing up litter, the group tidied the vegetation at the side of the store to make way for attractive new wildflowers.

The council’s champion for the environment, Cllr David Molyneux, says: “The work that Friends of Douglas Valley do is making a big difference. The council is very keen to support volunteers who are keen to improve their environment and we’ll be helping them further. So to help this group, or wherever you are – look after your area, put your litter in the bin and clean up after your dog.”

The Friends of Douglas Valley continued their work a few days later by clearing the path running alongside the River Douglas up to the entrance to Haigh Plantations. The litter pick proved to be a big success with over 20 bags full of rubbish being collected.

John Belshaw, from Friends of Douglas Valley, said: “As a local, I regularly use this pathway and it saddens me to see how untidy it is. I can’t believe that it is 2009 and people still continue to throw their litter knowing the problems it causes.”

The group were supported by Wigan Council’s Environmental Education Team who provided the group with their litter picking equipment and Tesco, who provided refreshments for the volunteers.

John pledged to carry on improving the area. He added: “A huge thank you to those who helped on the day. We always welcome any help from those who can offer it.”

The Friends of Douglas Valley are keen to spread the message of the importance of keeping the local environment tidy and intend to carry out further litter picks in the future. If you would like to help out with future litter picks or need further information, please contact Wigan Council’s Environmental Education Department (01942) 488222.

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