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Finderne and Findhorn residents complete community litter pick over last month


By Garry McCartney

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Lisa Wolff, Valerie Wardlaw, Tim and Jane Champion with their collection from the Dallas Road ditch in Rafford.
Lisa Wolff, Valerie Wardlaw, Tim and Jane Champion with their collection from the Dallas Road ditch in Rafford.

A RAFFORD woman organised a mass litter pick throughout Finderne over the last month.

Moray Waste Busters trustee and Bee Home Cottage business owner, Lisa Wolff, co-ordinated the event using equipment provided by Moray Council and Finderne Development Trust (FDT), involving nearly 40 Finderne residents, with social media support from FDT, Rafford Village Hall and Edinkille Hall.

Aliza and John Cudworth collected litter from Edinkille Hall up to Poldo Lodge.
Aliza and John Cudworth collected litter from Edinkille Hall up to Poldo Lodge.

Lisa previously worked in recycling education for ecomaine in Maine, USA before relocating to Rafford with her husband three years ago.

She explained: “Our local walk takes us past a ditch that was filled with recyclable plastic, glass bottles and lots of cans. I could not ignore its impending harm to wildlife any longer, and had a feeling I wasn’t alone. So I contacted Finderne Development Trust and Moray Council to see if a community-wide, socially distanced clean-up might be possible.”

Eleanor Garty collected this litter in Half Davoch
Eleanor Garty collected this litter in Half Davoch

Many of the volunteers had already been doing litter picks, but everyone was keen to make a bigger dent in litter that had accumulated in Rafford, Edinkille and Logie.

Lisa said: “I believe everyone had been starved of connecting with the community over lockdown, which is perhaps why so many were eager to help!”

Jim Durkin delivered pickers and bags.
Jim Durkin delivered pickers and bags.

The litter-pickers collaborated through a WhatsApp group and used Google sheets to reserve and share high-viz vests, gloves, pickers and bin bags donated by Jim Durkin, team leader at the local authority’s environmental and commercial services department.

“Jim was fantastic in arranging pick-ups of our accumulated litter collected at designated pick-up points,” said Lisa.

“All of the rubbish was brought to the Waterford Recycling Centre to be handled as rubbish in black bin bags or to be recycled in clear bin bags.”

John Finch moved heavier items in Rafford.
John Finch moved heavier items in Rafford.

Lisa encouraged the participants to give back to the beautiful surroundings that they had enjoyed even more throughout lockdown, and in celebration of Earth Day on April 22.

She said: “I’ve been blown away by the spirit that has resulted in a cleaner environment for us all to enjoy. “It is really heart-warming to be part of such an engaged and caring community committed to helping refresh the habitat for the flora and fauna around us.”

Kathleen Munro and Carla Horsnby collected broken chairs during the Findhorn litter pick.
Kathleen Munro and Carla Horsnby collected broken chairs during the Findhorn litter pick.

Lisa’s friend Nancy Hurst also led a team of 10 volunteers in a Findhorn Village litter pick April 28-30, with support from the Findhorn Village Conservation Company.

Nancy, a former resident of Rafford, aims to keep the village free from litter, especially during the expected influx of visitors over the summer.

She said: “Keeping the streets, trails and beaches free of litter encourages others to do the same.”

Kathleen Munro found a wee Smurf.
Kathleen Munro found a wee Smurf.

Forres Community Clean-up is also organising a community litter pick on May 30 at 2pm outside Pilmuir Primary School.

Lisa added: “Many in our group have committed to keeping their adopted walks free from litter, which is easier once you have done a major clean-up.

“People who want to join our Finderne volunteer group, or who want advice about starting their own litter-picking campaign, can contact me at beehomecottage@gmail.com.”

Anyone in Moray can co-ordinate efforts and borrow council equipment for litter picks by contacting the recycling hotline at waste@moray.gov.uk

Dave Hawkins on the Grantown road.
Dave Hawkins on the Grantown road.
Aileen Pistone's family picked on Grantown Road.
Aileen Pistone's family picked on Grantown Road.

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