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Tackling litter at Spalding nature reserve

When a festive walk by Vernatt's Nature Reserve turned into a litter-strewn obstacle course, Spalding man Pete Boekestijn decided to do something about it.

So Pete (61), who lives in Sherwood Drive and works at Welland Print, which backs on to the reserve, is not only staging his own war on litter, but has secured sponsorship for four recycling bins, which are now ready to be installed.

"I used to walk from Elsoms Seeds along to what we call Sharps Bridge when I had dogs. Just after Christmas I went for a walk and was horrified by the amount of rubbish there now," said Pete.

"I went out and collected 30 bags full of litter, which was just the stuff that was visible. I have picked up around 1,000 bottles and cans since Christmas.

Some of the cans and bottles which were just chucked away.
Some of the cans and bottles which were just chucked away.

"I started by hanging some green rubbish bags on trees, which have been used, but it's a pretty area and that's not really the answer, so I started looking for sponsorship for some bins."

Pete has been joined on his litter mission by dog walkers Arati and Venetia, plus Paddy and Ann Goslyn and Steve Aylett.

"It's a beautiful area and I wanted green bins that would blend in a bit with the countryside. They'll be going on the 'long stretch' of the path, along the old railway line.

Funding for the bins, which cost £130 each, came from Tanya Beresford at Infotel, Apex Group, Peterborough, Spike Wells and Steve and Nicolette Aylett.

"I've lived in the bottom corner of Sherwood Drive for 33 years. If I threw a ball hard enough, it would land in the reserve. The quantity of rubbish must be eradicated."

Graffiti-covered sign at the reserve.
Graffiti-covered sign at the reserve.

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