Volunteers spruce up the Commons to kick-off the Mayor’s Team London spring clean

The Mayor Boris Johnson called on Londoners to roll up their sleeves and help give their neighbourhoods a spring clean during a week of Capital Clean-up events from 9-17 March 2013.

Wandsworth residents responded to the call and a group of 20 volunteers helped spruce up Wimbledon and Putney Commons at a community clean up event on Saturday 9 March. Environmental regeneration charity Groundwork London and Volunteering Wandsworth worked with community volunteers to collect over 30 bin bags of litter from across the Commons.

Participant Thomas Moore said:

"We live locally just on the other side of the common and we really enjoy coming up here when the weather's good to walk. It seems only fair to put a couple of hours to try and do our little bit to keep it clean. I think that it is a pretty fair trade, all things considered!"

Capital Clean-up aims to encourage Londoners do their bit and help rejuvenate neglected parts of the city. Events include canal clean-ups, litter picks, habitat restoration, and graffiti removal.

Peter Haldane of the Wimbledon and Putney Commons Conservators said:

“Whist the great majority of visitors to the Commons act responsibly by either taking their rubbish away with them or by using the bins that we have provided, some individuals continue to leave their litter behind them and consequently spoil the beauty of the area for other people. For our part, we have a dedicated staff who spend many hours collecting all kinds of rubbish from the Commons but any assistance always greatly appreciated.

Volunteer events such as the Capital Clean-up are however extremely important for us and it is always incredible to see exactly what is brought in by the volunteers. Having now hosted two of these events, I very much hope that we will be able to repeat this exercise in the future.”

The campaign is led by the Mayor working hand in hand with London boroughs, housing associations, community groups, businesses and the Environment Agency. It is also part of the Mayor’s Team London programme which is seeking to build a volunteering legacy following the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games by encouraging Londoners to do something great for their city.

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said:

“Last summer Londoners showed off to the world their zeal for volunteering, helping to make this great city an even better place. I am determined to build on this community pride through my Team London programme. This spring’s Capital Clean-up is a fantastic opportunity to roll up your sleeves and put something back into your local neighbourhood.”

Capital Clean-up is now in its sixth year and has already championed more than 1,000 clean-up events helping London communities take part in the maintenance of the places where they live and work. In the 2011/12 campaign alone more than 6,000 volunteers took part.