Fir Vale Cleans Up!
Published on July 12, 2012
Eden Fir Vale reports on two great events around the Jubilee weekend that have provided inspiration for the community to carry on working together to benefit the area.
“On the Saturday of the Jubilee weekend we organised a community ‘litter pick’ in the streets around where we live” said Ben Baker, Eden Fir Vale team leader. “We were joined by our local PCSO, a local area cohesion worker, some Form+ guys from St Thomas Crookes and most encouragingly of all, about 20 children. Armed with black bags and litter picker they blitzed the area, collecting enough rubbish to fill a Ford Galaxy but leaving the area spotless.
“Found out today that since our litter pick for the jubilee some of the Slovakian community have been out sweeping the streets. They’ve told the council they want to do it regularly. Hope the people who said it wouldn’t make any difference eat their hats!”
“We have been really encouraged to see that since the litter pick we organised for the Jubilee weekend, another group in the community has taken it upon themselves to regularly litter pick the area,” continued Ben. “This has made a big difference to the tidiness of the area (which is no small thing!) but even more encouraging is to see other people catching on to the idea of doing something good for the community! We think this has really demonstrated being salt in the area as it has brought out good that was already there and just needed a stimulus.”
On Jubilee Sunday, after an optimistic attempt to put up bunting, the team realised that rain was going to prevent an outdoor street party. So, with the help of some local children everything was moved back inside, to Ben and Beth’s living room and kitchen where they held an indoor party instead. “We had a constant level of 25-30 guests in the house at any one time and we think we had about 50 visitors throughout the party,” said Ben.
“It was a great atmosphere with all the children mucking in to help share food and drink and clear up as we went along. The kitchen also became a hub of creativity as people joined in with the make-your-own-bunting idea – lots of decorated paper triangles pegged onto a washing line!
“We also gave out lots of party bags with balloons, sweets and special jubilee edition New Testament Bibles. The evening before one of our neighbours had come round to help bake union flag cakes with Beth and then came to help out at the party the following day. Another of our neighbours was unable to come but sent round a tray of amazing home-made samosas!”