Bideford Mayor launches clean-up campaign

A CLEANER and greener northern Devon is in prospect as initiatives take off to bring an extra shine to the region s towns. Torridge Grime Busters have already been a hit, making their presence felt in Bideford and Torrington and they will next week turn

A CLEANER and greener northern Devon is in prospect as initiatives take off to bring an extra shine to the region's towns.

Torridge 'Grime Busters' have already been a hit, making their presence felt in Bideford and Torrington and they will next week turn their attention to Holsworthy, tackling weeds, litter and graffiti at highlighted troublespots.

Bideford Mayor Andy Powell, meanwhile, on Monday launched his Bideford Pride initiative by leading a community team in a clean-up of the town centre.

Barnstaple is in the process of forming its own Green Team, a town council initiative which is due to be launched on October 14.


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After visiting groups and organisations within the town to find out what green initiatives they were involved with, the town council's environmental committee found many working towards similar goals, but unaware of what each other were doing, said town councillor Rod Hawes.

The Green Team was being formed as an umbrella organisation to help all these groups share information and work together towards the aim of making Barnstaple the "greenest town in Devon."

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He applauded the actions taking place in Bideford, but would not like to see the town sneak ahead of Barnstaple, he said.

Barnstaple had already carried out two "tidy up our town" weeks, with around 400 people taking part this year, said Mr Hawes.

Through their Green Team it was now hoped the town council would become a facilitator for groups to learn about each other, work together and encourage others to be more active.

He was keen that schools should be involved in this. There were already sustainability initiatives going on within 20 local schools and he would like to work with these eco-warriors and rangers, he said.

TorridgeDistrict Council's head of operational services, Ricky McCormack, said: "The Grime Busters is our way of re-branding cleansing in Torridge and every one of our hard-working cleansing staff works under the grime busting umbrella.

"Many of them have recently changed their working shift patterns in order to better serve the needs of the public.

"It's our new approach to keeping Torridge clean and includes high profile cleansing teams working in prominent places in our local towns, as well as less visible, but no less important teams, working in other places such as Stibb Cross."

Grime team members took part in the Bideford Pride day with local councillors, members of North Devon+ and Bideford Chamber of Commerce.

They removed weeds, cleared roof gutters, hosed traffic grime from streets and shop walls and repaired peeling paint.

A young offenders group helped to remove graffiti.

Devon county council lengthsmen were also in town clearing drains.

Devon County Council highways superintendent Julian Rosekilly said the county would now be tackling overgrown and shabby areas on the main approaches to the town.

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